In-toeing, also known as pigeon toes, is walking with the feet pointed inward. This condition commonly occurs in babies, between 8 and 15 months, when they first begin to stand. In most cases of in-toeing, both legs are equally affected. This condition is usually diagnosed before the age of three, but is most prominent between four and six. Some children may experience pain around the knee, but most cases of in-toeing are painless and do not produce any associated symptoms.
Causes of In-Toeing
In-toeing can be the result of several common causes:
- Tibial torsion (twisted shin bone)
- Femoral anteversion (twisted thigh bone)
- Metartasus adductus (abnormal inward bending of the foot)
It is thought that a family history of the condition may play a factor in a child developing in-toeing. Another cause of in-toeing may be a lack of space in the womb during fetal development.
Treatment of In-Toeing
In-toeing does not usually require treatment and often corrects on its own. Special braces were used, in the past, to correct the condition, but it has been shown that most cases of in-toeing gradually correct on their own. As the child matures, in-toeing usually does not interfere with physical activity. In severe cases, surgery is indicated only if the child has reached the age of 8 and their degree of measured anteversion exceeds normal range.