Your Healthy Family

Apr 11, 2013 9:52 AM by Marissa Torres

Fixing flat feet

Does your child complain about foot pain or fatigue? They many have flat feet.

Although most kids outgrow this, some cases should seek medical help.

10-year-old Andrew Veiseh loves to play basketball, but then his foot started bothering him.

"I felt pain in the bottom of my foot, and inside it too. I didn't know what it was."

A trip to the doctor confirmed: he has flat feet.

"When you have a flat foot, the arch is essentially collapsing." says Dr. Robert Lee, a surgeon.

Andrew is one of those kids who didn't outgrow the problem. for him, it just got worse.

Dr. Lee says if flat foot is left untreated, it could lead to other problems, such as childhood obesity.

"If a kid doesn't get out there to exercise cause his foot hurts then obviously that could contribute to those issues."

And further down the line...

"We see a lot of back pain, hip pain, knee pain. It will expose that individual to a lot of overuse syndromes. Stress fractures, tendon ruptures, other deformities which later in life can lead to major surgeries."

Signs that flat foot may be a problem for your child: they complain of foot pain,
they're not keeping up with the other kids in school in P.E., and they want to sit more than play with other children.

"Are they wearing the right shoes? Particularly if they're engaging in exercise. And if that's not enough, we'll consider an over the counter arch support or orthotic."

In Andrew's case, his flat feet were unusually severe. So they opted for a new type of surgery that takes about 15 minutes.

"It's a minimally invasive technique where we insert a little plug into a little cavity, the implant provides more stability, changes the architecture of the foot, and when done at an early enough of an age, it can change the maturation and development of the bone."

After surgery, Andrew returned to school in a week and now nothing is holding him back on the court.

"It doesn't have pain anymore and it feels better."



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