WHAT IS UNEQUAL LEG LENGTH?
There are many ways our bodies can be unexpectedly asymmetrical, such as having one leg that is shorter than the other. When this occurs, it is a condition known as unequal leg length. This issue can develop either following surgery or as a result of the natural progression of your body's growth. If unequal leg length is present, it can lead to additional asymmetry throughout the body and put extra stress on the joints, worsen conditions like osteoarthritis, and even cause back or joint pain. At Integrative Pain and Wellness Center, our team diagnoses unequal leg length and works to treat it to stop or prevent issues, such as joint discomfort and degeneration. If you have mild, moderate, or severe neck, back, or joint pain, contact our office in Southlake, TX and the surrounding areas of Midland, and Odessa, TX and schedule your appointment with Dr. Matthew Barker and Dr. Melanie Gray.
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SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
Nearly anyone can have legs that are unequal in length. This issue is especially common in those who may have had leg surgery in the past, a broken leg, or other trauma. Some of the most common signs of a leg length imbalance are:
- Joint pain
- Back pain
- Hip pain
- Knee pain
- Joint degeneration
- Asymmetrical curvature of the spine (scoliosis)
To determine if you have unequal leg length, you will need to attend a consultation with Dr. Barker or a member of his team. Once we have assessed your condition, we will go over your possible treatment options.
HOW IS UNEQUAL LEG LENGTH TREATED?
Once one of our osteopathic physicians has determined that you have legs that are unequal in length, we will confirm this diagnosis with an x-ray of both of your lower limbs. The treatment for an unequal leg length may involve a heel lift that goes inside the shoe of the shorter leg. In extreme cases, it could even require the bottom of your shoe to be built up. These measures will ensure that you can go about your day with proportionate leg lengths and prevent your joints and back from worsening. It should also help mitigate any pain you experience when walking or standing.
Unequal Leg Length FAQ
What are the causes of unequal leg length?
Unequal leg length can be caused by any number of factors, including a discrepancy that develops while growing, the results of a past surgery or broken bone, or asymmetrical posture.
Will treating unequal leg length require surgery?
Treatment for a leg length discrepancy should not require any form of surgery if you are an adult who has finished growing or has not experienced trauma in the limbs that resulted in one leg being significantly shorter than the other. At Integrative Pain and Wellness Center, we will usually treat unequal leg length with a heel lift inside the shoe or osteopathic manual treatment.
How much does treatment for unequal leg length cost?
Prices for treating a leg length discrepancy will vary based on the patient, the extent of their condition, and their recommended treatment plan. For more information, please schedule a consultation with Dr. Barker or a member of his team at our Southlake, TX office.
How is unequal leg length diagnosed at Integrative Pain and Wellness Center?
At Integrative Pain and Wellness Center, the diagnosis involves a comprehensive physical examination. Imaging studies like X-rays or MRIs may also be used to determine the exact difference in leg lengths.
What treatments are available at Integrative Pain and Wellness Center?
Treatment options range from conservative measures like orthotic inserts and physical therapy to surgical interventions for severe cases. The goal is to correct the imbalance and alleviate any associated pain or discomfort.
Is the treatment for unequal leg length covered by insurance?
Insurance coverage varies, but many insurance plans do cover treatments for unequal leg length. It's recommended to consult with your insurance provider and the financial team at Integrative Pain and Wellness Center for specific information.
PREVENT ISSUES BEFORE THEY START
At Integrative Pain and Wellness Center, our team takes a comprehensive approach when it comes to identifying and treating your pain. Having legs that are unequal in length can lead to a host of issues that you may not even be aware of so it's important to have these conditions diagnosed and addressed as soon as possible. Contact our office in Southlake, TX to schedule your consultation, and learn more about treating unequal leg length.