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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Top 100 Biomechanical Guidelines #26: Know Gait Findings for Short Leg Syndrome

When evaluating gait and looking for signs of a possible leg length discrepancy, look for these findings:
  1. Asymmetry Rules
  2. Leg Dominance
  3. Uneven Pronation
  4. Unequal Arm Swing
In the short video above, look again for these signs. Liz has the following gait changes:
  • Head Tilt to the left
  • Shoulder Drop to the left
  • Dominance to the left (marked left shift in body mass)
  • Right arm held out to the side (an attempt at balancing weight)
  • Increase arm swing on the left matching the increased pronation on the right side (the right lower extremity matches the left upper extremity
These gait findings do not actually tell us what side is the longer side, in fact they are contradictory if we just use generalizations. Generalization #1 tells us that 80% of the time adults are dominant to their longer side. Generalization #2 tells us that increased pronation is on the longer side. Since, these contradict each other, we must measure, but the exam hopefully would have screamed at us to check for short leg syndrome.

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Thank you very much for leaving a comment. Due to my time restraints, some comments may not be answered.I will answer questions that I feel will help the community as a whole.. I can only answer medical questions in a general form. No specific answers can be given. Please consult a podiatrist, therapist, orthopedist, or sports medicine physician in your area for specific questions.