Today was the somewhat long awaited physical therapy evaluation for Parker. We’d given him months of walking experience before deciding to go ahead and have him looked at by a professional, thinking that maybe over time the problems he was having would correct themselves as his legs got stronger, but they never did.
As always with Parker, I had no idea how the evaluation would go, but I knew from our OT that there was a possibility that more drastic measures would have to be taken if PT wasn’t an option.
It didn’t take very long for the PT who came in today along with our case manager to figure out why Parker walks so strangely, and that PT wouldn’t be able to help.
Ever since Parker started walking, he’s walked with a strange gait. Both feet splayed out, and he hyper extends his right leg so much that it almost gives him a limp. It’s a hard thing to explain unless you’ve seen it for yourself.
After taking a close look at Parker’s feet and legs, the PT pinpointed a few of the reasons why. Parker apparently has no arches in his feet. Most kids don’t develop them until 2 years of age, but they should at least have SOME by now, and Parker is “very low to the ground”- so much so that I guess in order to balance himself he not only splays his feet out, but walks on the insides of his feet. The outsides barely even touch the ground when he walks, and the shape of his right leg is bent compared to the left.
Since he is fully functional and at the age he is- there’s nothing PT can do to help him. Instead, he will need to see an orthopedist, who I am told will most likely have to prescribe lifts for his shoes in order to balance out his feet, forcing him to walk on the bottoms of them instead of the sides, but he’ll also need a brace on his right leg to correct his ankle and knee.
Jokes when I was pregnant and people told me to name my kid Forrest (because my name is Jenny) come to mind right now. I’m not pleased that Parker will have to wear a brace on his leg, but what else is there to do? He needs to be able to walk correctly, and if that’s the only thing that will help, then so be it. I’m just not so sure how well having shoes on for the majority of the day when he can’t stand anything on his feet, or having a brace on his leg he can’t remove, are going to fly.
It’s times like these where it’s hard not to think about all the comments from random internet idiots run through my mind. People who tried to say I was lying, or exaggerating. Making it up, I had munchausens. Parker was normal, etc etc. People are really stupid, and REALLY wrong.
One more thing to add to the list of reasons why you should always go with your gut. If you think something is wrong with your kid, no matter what anyone says to the contrary because of how smart or knowledgeable they think they are, there probably is something wrong.
It’s unfortunate that I have to be so right all the time!
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