Femoral anteversion is an inward twisting of the thighbone (femur). The femur is the bone that is located between the hip and the knee. This health problem causes a child’s knees and feet to turn inward. The child may have a pigeon-toed appearance.
The symptoms of femoral anteversion may include:
The bowed leg stance actually helps the child balance as he or she stands. Balance is not as steady when the child tries to stand and walk with the feet close together or with the feet turned out. He or she may trip and fall.
The symptoms of femoral anteversion may seem like other health problems. Make sure your child sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
Femoral anteversion is often detected when a child is 4 to 6 years old. You may also first notice it when your child is starting to learn how to walk. But it may be present in different aged children for different reasons.
Your child’s healthcare provider can diagnose femoral anteversion with a physical exam. During the exam, he or she asks about your child’s birth history and if other family members are known to have the condition. Your child usually will not need X-rays.
Treatment will depend on your child’s symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how severe the condition is.
The twisting in of the thighbone usually gets better with time. Many cases correct themselves as the child grows. Your child will likely walk normally by 8 to 10 years of age.
Your child’s healthcare provider may prescribe braces or special shoes. But most studies have found that these treatments don't help. If the femoral anteversion is severe, your child may need surgery to straighten the thighbone.
It is important to know that femoral anteversion usually does not lead to arthritis or any other future health problems.
Tips to help you get the most from a visit to your child’s healthcare provider:
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