What is it?
Toe-walking is a fairly self explanatory pattern of gait where a child does not make heel contact as they walk. It can be part of a normal developmental process for children under 3 years of age, however most will have a regular heel-toe pattern by the time they’re 2.
What causes it?
Most often toe walking is of unknown cause (idiopathic toe walking) but family history is a factor in up to 71% of cases.
Toe-walking can sometimes present due to systemic pathology. Your podiatrist will be able to determine this after a thorough assessment and refer for further investigations if necessary.
What can be done?
Treatment is determined by the severity and classification type (being mild, moderate or severe depending on available ankle movement and gait pattern of your child). There are two broad categories for management being conservative and surgical.
Conservative options include:
- Night splints
- serial casting
- Botox injections
Surgical treatment consists of Achilles tendon lengthening and post-op casting