Limb Malalignments- Diagnosis, Causes, Symptoms and Prevention

What is a limb malalignment?

Limb malalignments in the lower body include chronic knee pain conditions called varus and valgus. Varus is commonly known as bowed legs while valgus is referred to as knock knees. Basically, the alignment of the legs and knees are pointed so much inward or outward that it interrupts normal functioning. Often, a limb malalignment diagnosis is seen in younger patients.

What causes limb malalignments?

Patients who suffer from limb malalignments are either born with this condition or it occurs over time. This applies to both varus and valgus limb malalignments. The main causes that contribute to limb malalignment knee pain include:

  • Developmental deformity
  • Previous knee injuries
  • Repetitive knee exercises

Even though lower limb malalignments are commonly seen in young patients, adults can experience bowed legs and knock knees as well. Excessive knee exercises and injuries can cause this form of chronic knee pain.

How do I know if I have a limb malalignment?

Since there are two forms of lower limb malalignment, patients’ knees will either face more outward or more inward. Patients who suffer from varus limb malalignment symptoms can see their legs may resemble an archer’s bow.  Patients who suffer from valgus limb malalignment will see their knees are so close together that they may even touch. Other limb malalignment symptoms are:

  • Pain felt throughout the legs, especially in the knees
  • Stiff knees that have problems when bending
  • Swelling and inflammation in the muscles around the knees
  • Popping, clicking or even grinding sounds can be heard when going up and down stairs

How do I prevent limb malalignment?

Adult patients can prevent a lower limb malalignment diagnosis and chronic knee pain. The legs and knees should be straight and face forward. Your knees should also have enough strength to painlessly carry your weight. There are simple techniques that patients can utilize to prevent this chronic knee pain condition. Adult patients can prevent limb malalignment knee pain by:

  • Practicing good posture and standing up straight
  • Consuming a well-balanced diet with full nutrients
  • Maintaining a healthy weight appropriate for your body type
  • Treating knee injuries before they turn into a chronic condition