Toes Turning In

Parent Q&A

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  • My daughter’s feet turn towards each other (the toes point inwards) often times when she stands and walk. I have brought this up with my pediatrician multiple times but I have only been told that she will grow out of it. Now she is 3.5yrs and it is not improving. Is there anything that we can do?

    Has she been evaluated for hip dysplasia? Just a thought. My daughter has hip dysplasia and one foot turns inward. 

    Our 4 year old has crossed toes, meaning his second and third toes lightly cross on top of each other; third and fourth are curved (and second toe points inwards as a result). Our pediatrician (Kaiser) made a referral to the pediatric podiatrist, who was lovely. She indicated he would need a fairly standard surgery to release tight tendons in the third and fourth toes to straighten them; her own son needed the same procedure. She indicated it would need to be done before he's 6 when the toes are less adaptable to change, but that it could lead to real difficulty and discomfort as he ages, if not addressed. We're waiting for him to get vaccinated before we proceed, given that we've got a little more time based on her advice.

    In order to reassure yourself the intoeing is still developmentally appropriate at her age, you should take her to a Pediatric Orthopedist or Peds Ortho surgeon. Depending on your insurance, you could self-refer, or if you have an HMO (or Kaiser) just ask your Pediatrician for that 2nd (ortho) opinion - I don't know of any pediatricians who would deny a worried parent. I can recommend Dr. Diab and Dr. Livingston at UCSF.

    I would suggest you see a pediatric physical therapist. They can assess if it's a structural different at the foot or up higher on the leg. They can set up a treatment plan if it's interfering with her walking and running.