Health Tip: Looking for Knock-knees

Signs that you should be concerned

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(HealthDay News) -- If your toddler's legs seem to curve outward at the knees, there's probably no reason for concern. Look around, and you'll see that few young children have legs that are truly straight.

Ordinarily the legs straighten out, and look perfectly normal by adolescence. Bracing, corrective shoes and exercise are not helpful and, in fact, can hinder a child's physical development and cause emotional difficulty, experts say.

Here are some signs from the American Academy of Pediatrics that suggest a child's bowlegs or knock-knees may be caused by a serious problem:

  • The curvature is extreme.
  • Only one side is affected.
  • Bowlegs get worse after age 2.
  • Knock-knees persist after age 7.
  • Your child also is unusually short for his age.

If your child's condition fits any of these descriptions, you should talk to your pediatrician.


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