Pediatric Flatfoot

What is Pediatric Flatfoot?
Pediatric flatfoot occurs when a child experiences a partial or total collapse of the arch. This condition can be present from birth, or acquired through injury. Most children with flatfoot won't experience symptoms, but those that do can have a variety of symptoms, including:

  • Pain, tenderness, or cramping in the foot, leg, and knee
  • Outward tilting of the heel
  • Awkwardness or changes in walking
  • Difficulty wearing shoes
  • Reduced energy during physical activities, or no desire to perform physical activities due to the symptoms above

Types of Pediatric Flatfoot
Symptomatic flatfoot can be catagorized as flexible or rigid. Flexible means the foot is flat while standing, but returns to normal when not bearing weight. Rigid means that the arch is always stiff and flat. There are multiple kinds of rigid flatfoot; your doctor will educate you on your child's particular case.

Diagnosis
The podiatrist will examine the foot and observe the way it looks when the child sits and stands. They will also observe the way your child walks, and evaluate their range of motion in their foot. Because flatfoot can be related to problems with the leg, they might also examine the knee and hip. You should expect x-rays to be performed, and the doctor may also order an MRI, CT scan, or blood test.