Pediatric flatfoot is a deformity where the arch of the foot of a child is collapsed. Flatfoot issues are more common in children than in adults because bones in a child’s feet are still forming.
Children with flat feet may complain of pain in the foot, lower back, hip, knee, or leg. Younger children usually complain about tired or sore feet and legs, or pain on the inside of the knee. Children with flat feet may favor one foot over the other. In severe cases children may prefer alternatives including riding a bike or skateboarding (or getting picked up by their parents), so that they don’t have to walk as much. They are likely to try to avoid active sports.
Children that wear non-supportive shoes, or those who come from a family with a history of flat feet are more likely to experience pediatric flatfoot.
Young children’s feet have a much higher percentage of cartilage in relation to bone compared to adult bones. In children, pediatric flatfoot causes the inside arch of the foot to be flattened, the heel bone to be turned outward, and the inside of the foot to bow outward. With age, the cartilage is replaced by stronger bone which makes the incidence of flatfoot less likely in adulthood.
It’s important to be sure that a child’s bones develop properly to avoid potential foot, knee, and back pain in the future. For cases involving mild flatfoot and no symptoms, conservative treatment options include custom orthotics and yearly check-ups with the podiatrist. For children with severe flatfoot deformity, treatment may include functional orthotics with more supportive footwear and more frequent check-ups. For the most severe cases, surgery may be recommended.
The Concierge Podiatry Advantage
At Concierge Podiatry, we believe early diagnosis is essential to reduce the intervention required to correct pediatric flatfoot. With our custom Perfect Posture orthotics we can often reduce the likelihood of adult flatfoot which is significantly more challenging to treat. If surgery is required, we offer the foot align procedure, a minimally invasive surgical procedure to correct more severe cases of pediatric flatfoot.
At Concierge Podiatry we specialize in treating all podiatric issues. We take the time needed to diagnose and explain any treatment options before beginning any course of treatment.
- Contact Concierge Podiatry for an appointment
- Learn more about treatment options often used to treat this issue