There are many physiological and anatomical differences between children and adults therefore children require a specialised approach to their orthopaedic management.

All children grow and develop differently; a bow-legged, wobbly walk is sometimes normal when baby has started walking but as time goes by, a problem might present itself in your child’s gait.

If you start seeing clumsy walking, tripping, leg pain, knock knees or continued bow legs then consider booking an examination by our qualified podiatrist.

In fact, anything that is causing concern about a child’s growth and development such as excessive wearing down of shoes or tripping up or pain should always be checked out, if only to give you peace of mind.

Our children’s assessments usually take 1 hour and include range of movement, strength, functional, neurological and gait assessment. With our younger patients we encourage assessment through play and provide a safe and welcoming environment in which to do so.

Our Children’s Podiatry service includes:

Hypermobility

Hypermobility, or ligamentous laxity is often seen in children at our clinic. The term hypermobility refers to joint flexibility, beyond what the normal joint range of motion should be. Many of the joints in the body can become extra flexible because the ligaments around the joint that normally give the joint its support become more “stretchy”. The hypermobility can allow the joints to get into positions that they shouldn’t normally be in and this compromised position can lead to subsequent pathologies. Aches and pains can present but often there can be no symptoms. The joints of the lower limb are particularly vulnerable to the affects of hypermobility because these are the weight bearing joints of the body.

Metatarsus Adductus

Metatarsus adductus refers to the shape of the foot. There is an inward slanting of the forefoot with a convex lateral border instead of being straight. There are 3 main types of metatarsus adductus and the type will indicate the management plan.

Rigid Metatarsus Adductus: Refer for a surgical opinion

Flexible Metatarsus Adductus: Treatment is often not required.

  • Reassure parents that the condition normally resolves itself
  • Stretching by parents at home by abducting the forefoot while controlling the rearfoot position
  • Monitor sitting and sleeping positions that accentuate the adducted position
  • Wear shoes with a straight last

Semi-flexible Metatarsus Adductus: Some treatment is recommended to realign the position of the foot. This is normally serial casting or splinting. Or often splinting might be used after casting to hold the position of the foot after casting has taken place. Once again parents can monitor sitting and sleeping positions and ensure the child is wearing a shoe with a straight last.

If you are concerned regarding your child’s Metatarsus Adductus or are not sure if your child has this deformity, a thorough physical examination by a trained practitioner is first recommend. Podiatrists are your foot health experts!

 

Delayed development difficulties

We often treat children who are a little behind in their developmental stages. This can be caused by a number of things, from specific neurological and developmental disorders to fully treatable physical issues that can result in poor gross motor skills coordination. Things to look out for are; tripping, clumsiness, reduced coordination, reduced muscle tone and stiff and jerky gait patterns.

Skin conditions

Skin complains seen in children that can be treated by a podiatrist include:

  • Tineapedis (fungal infection
  • Plantar veruccae (warts)
  • Corns
  • callous
Sporting injuries

Kid’s love sport but it can be rough out there. We treat everything from cuts and bruises to sprains and pulled muscles. In addition to acute injuries Sure Step Podiatry pride themselves in knowledge of the paediatric patient and can diagnose and manage chronic pain associated with various types of sport.  These may include a slow healing injury due to poor biomechanics or a growth plate abnormality.

Toe concerns

Digital deformities can be present from birth or start to appear once the child starts to walk. Common conditions treated concerning toes are; curly toe, overlapping toe, juvenile hallux valgus (or bunion) and hammer toes.

Calcaneal apophysitis

Calcaneal apophysiitis is the inflammation of the growth plate of the calcaneaus or the heel bone. This condition is often seen in active children between the ages of 8 and 15 years and is the most common cause of heel pain in children.

During adolescence, bone growth plates develop in a process where cartilage is replaced by bone. It is understood that due to overuse, sudden increased in activity and rapid growth spurts this process is disrupted causing inflammation and pain when walking and running. Often children at risk for developing this condition present with either flat or high arched feet, poor fitting shoes, one leg maybe shorter than the other, or children who play a lot of sport.

Osgood Schlatters Disease

Osgood Schlatters Disease is a condition that we see that often occurs in athletic or active children between the ages of 10 and 15. Generally this is an overuse injury of the knee in running and jumping sports. Commonly your child may complain of pain just below the knee cap with the tenderness worse during after activity or exercise.

Just like in Sever’s Disease, another growing pain, this presents as a result of the disturbance during a period of a rapid growth spurt. The growth plate in this condition is an injury due to tension of a tendon of quadriceps (front thigh muscles) is located in a bony area at the top of the tibia (shin) just below the knee.

Walking difficulties

Many parents become concerned that their child’s gait is abnormal, although very often it is age appropriate or corrects itself without any help. You may have concern about your child intoeing and subsequently tripping over. You may have concerns about your child  toe walking or not keeping up with their peers. If you have any concerns about the way your child walks, contact Sure Step Podiatry for a thorough assessment. We will be able to provide reassurance, treatment, exercises or onward referral.

Treatment Options

Depending on the type of problem and the individual condition for your child, we have a number of treatment options.

Orthotics

Orthoses – these are specially made devices for your child to wear inside their shoe to control, realign or cushion abnormalities

Splints/Padding/Strapping

Splints can help realign joints whilst strapping or padding can be added to the foot or inside the child’s shoe to offload painful areas.

Stretching and Strengthening

We will design a custom set of exercises your child can do in order to build strength and help stretch problem ligaments and muscles.

Gait Assessment

A detailed gait assessment can be performed in order to fully understand how you child is walking and how that is affecting the rest of the body. A personally tailored treatment plan would follow.

It’s never too late or too early to start looking after your feet

Contact Us Today

What Our Clients Say

Great service! Professional, friendly and caring.
Imaken Images
Imaken Images
07:42 09 Sep 20
Anna, Karin and Brigid are all lovely. They spend the time to listen and address any concerns. They will give you the most accurate factual information and also have access to new diagnostic equipment making your visit more pleasant and comfortable with out having to refer you to another service. They accommodate late afternoon appointments for those after school or work appointments and emergency appointments for those in pain or at an extreme health risk. You are able to see Anna, Karin or Brigid at 3 locations on the Mid North Coast. Coffs Harbour, Nambucca and Woolgoolga. Each location is easily accessible with free parking. Hicaps is also available saving you the headache of claiming from your healthfund. 🤗 5 stars from me.
Ashley Mosley
Ashley Mosley
10:14 02 Aug 19
Parking is easily accessible and very close to town anyway. The rooms were nice and fresh, the staff there are lovely and caring. They gave me a very thorough assessment. I would highly recommend them.
Ellen Barry
Ellen Barry
02:07 06 Jul 19
Experienced, professional and caring podiatrists.
Kristen Power
Kristen Power
10:07 20 Jun 19
Susan  Crocetti
Susan Crocetti
22:15 12 Jun 19
Easy parking at the rear, Fresh modern clinics and friendly and helpful staff.Can highly recommend Sure Step
tim james
tim james
11:03 31 May 19