The use of shoe type «squeakers» in children with idiopathic transient toe walking

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Introduction. Transient toe walking is a common benign condition in young children. Nevertheless, it leads to parents’ concern and becomes a frequent reason for visits to orthopaedists.

Aim: a preliminary assessment of the effectiveness of «squeakers» shoes for optimizing of gait in children with transient idiopathic toe walking.

Material and methods. A prospective study of 24 children (mean age: 21.4 months) which are under surveillance in outpatient clinics for toe walking as the main complaint. Children supplied free of charge with «squeakers» shoes. Parents filled questionnaires 1 month after the usage of these shoes.

Results. Positive changes in gait (normalization or improvements) were reported in the majority (22 from 24) children. More than half of parents noticed normal gait in regular shoes and one third — barefoot. No deterioration has been observed.

Discussion. We conducted a preliminary study assessing the effectiveness of modified shoes («squeakers») in children with transient idiopathic toe walking. Most of the parents reported improvements in walking. As a potential mechanism, we suggest positive biofeedback with the recruiting of the sensory (audial) pathway.

Conclusion. Based on our study we can recommend «squeakers» for children with transient idiopathic toe walking demonstrating delayed spontaneous improvement.

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About the authors

Vladimir M. Kenis

G. Turner National Medical Research Center for Children’s Orthopedics and Trauma Surgery; I.I. Mechnikov North-Western State Medical University

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7651-8485

MD, Ph.D., DSci., Deputy Director for development and foreign relations

Russian Federation, Saint-Petersburg

Nikita O. Khusainov

G. Turner National Medical Research Center for Children’s Orthopedics and Trauma Surgery

ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3036-3796
Russian Federation, Saint-Petersburg


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Supplementary files

Supplementary Files
1. The appearance of the shoe type « squeakers»; the arrow indicates a sound extraction device in the region of the heel

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2. Application. Research Participant Questionnaire

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