Idiopathic toe walking
Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Toe walking is a bilateral gait abnormality in which a normal heel strike is absent and most weight bearing occurs through the forefoot. This abnormality may not be pathologic in patients aged <2 years, but it is a common reason for referral to an orthopaedic surgeon. Toe walking can be caused by several neurologic and developmental abnormalities and may be the first sign of a global developmental problem. Cases that lack a definitive etiology are categorized as idiopathic. A detailed history, with careful documentation of the developmental history, and a thorough physical examination are required in the child with a primary report of toe walking. Treatment is based on age and the severity of the abnormality. Management includes observation, stretching, casting, bracing, chemodenervation, and surgical lengthening of the gastrocnemius-soleus complex and/or Achilles tendon. An understanding of idiopathic toe walking as well as treatment options and their outcomes can help the physician individualize treatment to achieve optimal results.
Oetgen, M., & Peden, S. (2012). Idiopathic toe walking. Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 20 (5). http://dx.doi.org/10.5435/JAAOS-20-05-292