As parents, we want the best for our children, so it’s only natural to be concerned when a child’s feet don’t look quite right at birth. At Southern California Foot & Ankle Specialists, we’re well known for our treatment of clubfoot deformity in young children, but it isn’t the only condition that can affect your child’s feet. Metatarsus adductus, also known as intoeing, is another.
What is Metatarsus Adductus?
Metatarsus adductus (MTA) refers to a condition in which the front half of a child’s foot (forefoot) is curved inward. The foot may be either flexible or non-flexible. About half of children with the metatarsus adductus have it in both feet. The exact cause is not known.
What are the Symptoms of Metatarsus Adductus?
Children with MTA may walk or run with their feet turned inward rather than pointing straight. There may be a gap between your child’s largest and second-largest toes, and they might have a high arch. The heels and hindfoot remain properly aligned. Babies with MTA are at an increased risk for developmental dysplasia of the hip (DDH).
Does Your Child Need Treatment?
Unlike clubfoot, MTA frequently requires no treatment at all. Much of the time, a flexible metatarsus adductus will slowly correct itself over the first few years of life as your child grows and gains practice walking.
However, if the forefoot is particularly rigid (non-flexible), metatarsus adductus may persist into later childhood and even adulthood. Adult MTA is much harder to treat and may lead to additional complications, such as osteoarthritis.
What are the Treatment Options?
If your child does require treatment to straighten part of their foot, our team of experts will help you develop an appropriate treatment plan.
This may include:
- Stretching exercises for the feet.
- Splints or special shoes to align the foot.
- Foot and leg casting.
- In extreme cases, surgery.
Contact Us for Help and Treatment!
If you’re concerned with the appearance of your child’s feet, Dr. Spencer, Dr. Rodriguez, and Dr. Nguyen at Southern California Foot & Ankle Specialists can offer expert advice. You can reach our Ladera Ranch, CA office at (949) 364-9255 or you can contact us right on our website.
Making sure your little ones grow up healthy and happy is our passion!