Rehabilitation improves walking kinematics in children with a knee varus: Randomized controlled trial

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Background: Previous studies have demonstrated increased medial stresses in knee varus alignment. Selecting a suitable treatment strategy for individuals with knee malalignment should be a priority. Objectives: We aimed to investigate the effects of a 16-week corrective exercise continuum (CEC) program on 3-D joint angles of the dominant and non-dominant lower limbs in children with genu varus during walking. Methods: Overall, 28 male children with genu varus (age range 9–14 years) volunteered to participate in this study. They were randomly divided into 2 equal groups (experimental and control). The participants of the experimental group received CEC for 16 weeks. 3-D gait analysis involved using a Vicon Motion System. Paired and independent sample t-tests were used for within- and between-group comparisons, respectively. Results: For the experimental group, comparison of pre- and post-test joint kinematics of the dominant lower limb revealed that CEC decreased the peak ankle dorsiflexion angle by 26% (P = 0.020), peak foot internal rotation angle by 53% (P = 0.001), peak knee internal rotation angle by 40% (P = 0.011), peak hip abduction by 47% (P = 0.010), and peak hip external rotation angle by 60% (P = 0.001). In contrast, peak knee external rotation angle of the dominant limb was increased after the training program by 46% (P = 0.044). For the non-dominant lower limb, CEC decreased the peak ankle inversion by 63% (P < 0.01), peak ankle eversion by 91% (P < 0.01), peak foot internal rotation by 50% (P < 0.01), peak knee internal rotation by 29%; P = 0.042), peak hip abduction angle by 38% (P < 0.01), and peak hip external rotation angle by 60% (P < 0.01). Conclusions: CEC therapy reduced excessive foot and knee internal rotations as well as excessive hip external rotation during walking in children with genu varus.

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Jafarnezhadgero, A. A., Majlesi, M., Etemadi, H., & Robertson, D. G. E. (2018). Rehabilitation improves walking kinematics in children with a knee varus: Randomized controlled trial. Annals of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, 61(3), 125–134.

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