Gait Abnormality

A gait abnormality changes your normal walking pattern and may make you feel unsteady on your feet. The highly skilled team of health professionals at Texas Orthopaedic Associates in Dallas, Plano, Weatherford, Keller, and Fort Worth, Texas, diagnose and treat gait abnormalities. If you or someone you love is walking differently, the team at Texas Orthopaedic Associates can help. Call the office nearest you today or schedule your gait abnormality evaluation using the online booking button.


What is a gait abnormality?

A gait abnormality means there’s a change in your usual walking pattern. Your gait, or walking pattern, is unique and requires direction from your brain and spinal cord and coordination between your muscles, bones, and joints. 

Any condition that affects your brain or spinal cord or any of the muscles, bones, or joints involved in walking, may change your gait. Instead of walking smoothly, you may limp, drag your toes, or shuffle your feet.

Without proper care, a gait abnormality may put you at risk of falls that cause other injuries. 

What are the types of gait abnormalities?

The team at Texas Orthopaedic Associates classifies your gait abnormality into a type based on the cause of the gait change or how it affects the way you walk. 

Common types of gait abnormalities include:

Antalgic gait

Antalgic gait is a limp caused by pain. It’s the most common type of gait abnormality and may occur if you have pain in your feet, ankles, knees, or hips.

Propulsive gait

A propulsive gait is common in people with Parkinson’s disease. With a propulsive gait, your posture is stooped and stiff, and your steps are slow and short.

Scissors gait

A scissor gait is when the knees or thighs touch or cross in a scissor-like pattern when walking. 

Spastic gait

With a spastic gait, you walk with a stiff leg. This type of gait is common in people with cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis (MS), and hemiplegia (paralysis on one side of the body).

Waddling gait

A waddling gait causes exaggerated movements in the upper body, creating a waddle or duck-like walk. 

Shuffling gait

A shuffling gait is when the feet don’t completely lift when you take a step. You may shuffle if you feel unsteady on your feet or have an injury that affects how you walk.

What are the treatments for gait abnormality?

The team at Texas Orthopaedic Associates customizes your gait abnormality treatment plan based on type and cause. Treatment may include:

  • Management of the underlying cause
  • Physical therapy
  • Bracing or splinting
  • Mobility devices (canes or walkers)
  • Change in footwear

In some cases, the team may recommend surgery, such as a joint replacement procedure, to fix the condition causing your gait abnormality.

Schedule your gait abnormality evaluation by calling Texas Orthopaedic Associates or booking an appointment online today.