Knock Knee Deformity

Knocked-knees implies that the knees are pointing in toward the middle of the body.  While bow legs often correct on their own, knocked-knees may not completely correct, and therefore, it is important that your surgeon follows your child overtime to decide if the knocked-knees are, in fact, getting better, worse, or staying the same.  Most children with knock knees should correct by the age of 5.  If they are not correcting, then your surgeon may recommend putting a little plate in the bone to help guide the knees to grow straighter.  If your child has completely finished growing, the only solution would be to cut the bone in order to allow it to straighten out.

Case example:  This is a 10 year old girl with knocked knees.  When a line is drawn from the center of the head of the femur to the center of the ankle joint, that line should normally fall through the center of the knee.  This is known as the mechanical axis.  In this girl, the mechanical axis falls to the outside of the center of the knee on both the right and left sides.  Then, this patient had a surgery in which small plates were inserted to temporarily stop growth to the inside portion of the bone.  As you can see, it was able to straighten out her limbs nicely.  Soon after this x-ray, the plates were removed.  She is pain-free, minimal scars, and no evidence of any recurrence.


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