Hesperian Health Guides

Severe Knock-Knees

To check for severe knock-knees, have the child stand with her knees touching. If the distance between the ankle bones is more than 3 inches in a 3 year old, or 4 inches in a 4 year old, the problem is probably severe enough to need attention.

If the knock-knees are severe, braces may help straighten the knees and keep the condition from getting worse. In a child over 6 or 7 years old, braces usually do not help. In extreme cases, surgery may be needed. Knock-knees may also lead to flat feet.

Sign of a problem
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3 years old
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4 years old
more than 3 inches (7½ cm.) more than 4 inches (10 cm.)


This page was updated:21 Nov 2019