Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.
Regional Medical Center
1155 Mill St

Children's Hospital
1155 Mill St

Rehabilitation Hospital
1495 Mill St

South Meadows Medical Center
10101 Double R Blvd

Skilled Nursing
1835 Oddie Blvd

Carson Valley Medical Center
1107 HWY 395
Center for Advanced Medicine B
1500 E 2nd St

Center for Advanced Medicine C
75 Pringle Way

Institute for Heart & Vascular Health
1155 Mill St

Institute for Cancer
1155 Mill St
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.
Regional Medical Center
1155 Mill St

Children's Hospital
1155 Mill St

Rehabilitation Hospital
1495 Mill St

South Meadows Medical Center
10101 Double R Blvd

Skilled Nursing
1835 Oddie Blvd

Carson Valley Medical Center
1107 HWY 395
Center for Advanced Medicine B
1500 E 2nd St

Center for Advanced Medicine C
75 Pringle Way

Institute for Heart & Vascular Health
1155 Mill St

Institute for Cancer
1155 Mill St
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Renown Regional Medical Center

1155 Mill St Reno, NV 89502
775-982-4100


Renown Regional Medical Center
1155 Mill St, Reno, NV 89502
Renown Health serves a 17-county region with a total population in excess of 750,000. Our facilities include two medical centers, a rehabilitation hospital, a skilled nursing facility, numerous medical group and urgent care facilities, and the region's most trusted health insurance provider, Hometown Health. 775-982-5000

Renown Children's Hospital

1155 Mill St Reno, NV 89502
775-982-KIDS (5437)

Renown Children's Hospital
1155 Mill St, Reno, NV 89502
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Renown Rehabilitation Hospital

1495 Mill St Reno, NV 89502
775-982-3500


Renown Rebabilitation Hospital - 1495 Mill St
1495 Mill St, Reno, NV 89502
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Renown South Meadows
Medical Center

10101 Double R Blvd Reno, NV 89521
775-982-7000


Renown South Meadows - 10101 Double R Blvd
10101 Double R Blvd, Reno, NV 89521
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Carson Valley Medical Center

1107 Hwy 395 Gardnerville, NV 89410
775-782-1550


Carson Valley Medical Center - 1107 Highway 395
1107 Highway 395, Gardnerville, NV 89410
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Renown Skilled Nursing

1835 Oddie Blvd Sparks, NV 89431
775-982-3232


Renown Skilled Nursing - 1835 Oddie Blvd
1835 Oddie Boulevard, Sparks, NV 89431
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Renown Health Urgent Care

775-982-5000

Renown Health Urgent Care
9 convenient locations
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.
Renown Lab Services offers convenient access to complete your lab work with 10 locations close to your home or work. For your convenience, many of the locations are located inside or next to Renown hospitals and medical groups. Extended and Saturday hours are available at some locations.
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Center for Advanced Medicine B at Renown Regional

1500 E 2nd St Reno, NV 89502
775-982-4100


Center for Advanced Medicine B - 1500 E. 2nd St
1500 E. 2nd St., Reno, NV 89502
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Center for Advanced Medicine C at Renown Regional

75 Pringle Way Reno, NV 89502
775-982-4100


Center for Advanced Medicine C - 75 Pringle Way
75 Pringle Way, Reno, NV 89502
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Renown Institute Heart & Vascular Health

1155 Mill St Reno, NV 89502
775-982-7888


Institute for Heart & Vascular Health - 1155 Mill St
1155 Mill St, Reno, NV 89502
Based in Reno, Nevada, Renown Health continues to be the regional healthcare leader, serving a 17-county region comprised of northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is Reno’s only locally owned, not-for-profit health network offering more services than all other local healthcare networks combined.

Renown Institute for Cancer

1155 Mill St Reno, NV 89502
775-982-5638


Renown Institute for Cancer - 1155 Mill St
1155 Mill St, Reno, NV 89502
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Walking abnormalities

Definition

Walking abnormalities are unusual and uncontrollable walking patterns. They are usually due to diseases or injuries to the legs, feet, brain, spinal cord, or inner ear.

Alternative Names

Gait abnormalities

Considerations

The pattern of how a person walks is called the gait. Different types of walking problems occur without a person's control. Most, but not all, are due to a physical condition.

Some walking abnormalities have been given names:

  • Propulsive gait -- a stooped, stiff posture with the head and neck bent forward
  • Scissors gait -- legs flexed slightly at the hips and knees like crouching, with the knees and thighs hitting or crossing in a scissors-like movement
  • Spastic gait -- a stiff, foot-dragging walk caused by a long muscle contraction on one side
  • Steppage gait -- foot drop where the foot hangs with the toes pointing down, causing the toes to scrape the ground while walking, requiring someone to lift the leg higher than normal when walking
  • Waddling gait -- a duck-like walk that may appear in childhood or later in life

Common Causes

Abnormal gait may be caused by diseases in many different areas of the body.

General causes of abnormal gait may include:

  • Arthritis of the leg or foot joints
  • Conversion disorder (a psychological disorder)
  • Foot problems (such as a callus, corn, ingrown toenail, wart, pain, skin sore, swelling, or spasms)
  • Fracture
  • Injections into muscles that causes soreness in the leg or buttocks
  • Infection
  • Injury
  • Legs that are different lengths
  • Myositis
  • Shin splints
  • Shoe problems
  • Tendonitis
  • Torsion of the testis

This list does not include all causes of abnormal gait.

CAUSES OF SPECIFIC GAITS

Home Care

Treating the cause often improves the gait. For example, gait abnormalities from trauma to part of the leg will improve as the leg heals.

Physical therapy almost always helps with short-term or long-term gait disorders. Therapy will reduce the risk of falls and other injuries.

For an abnormal gait that occurs with conversion disorder, counseling and support from family members are strongly recommended.

For a propulsive gait:

  • Encourage the person to be as independent as possible.
  • Allow plenty of time for daily activities, especially walking. People with this problem are likely to fall because they have poor balance and are always trying to catch up.
  • Provide walking assistance for safety reasons, especially on uneven ground.
  • See a physical therapist for exercise therapy and walking retraining.

For a scissors gait:

  • People with a scissors gait often lose skin sensation. Skin care should be used to avoid skin sores.
  • Leg braces and in-shoe splints can help keep the foot in the right position for standing and walking. A physical therapist can supply these and provide exercise therapy, if needed.
  • Medications (muscle relaxers, anti-spasticity medications) can reduce the muscle overactivity.

For a spastic gait:

  • Exercises are encouraged.
  • Leg braces and in-shoe splints can help keep the foot in the right position for standing and walking. A physical therapist can supply these and provide exercise therapy, if needed.
  • A cane or a walker is recommended for those with poor balance.
  • Medications (muscle relaxers, anti-spasticity medications) can reduce the muscle overactivity.

For a steppage gait:

  • Get enough rest. Fatigue can often cause a person to stub a toe and fall.
  • Leg braces and in-shoe splints can help keep the foot in the right position for standing and walking. A physical therapist can supply these and provide exercise therapy, if needed.

For a waddling gait, follow the treatment your health care provider prescribed.

Call your health care provider if

If there is any sign of uncontrollable and unexplained gait abnormalities, call your health care provider.

What to expect at your health care provider's office

The health care provider will take a medical history and perform a physical examination.

Medical history questions may include:

  • Time pattern
    • When did this problem with walking begin?
    • Did it occur suddenly or gradually?
    • Has it become worse over time?
  • Quality (type of gait disturbance)
    • Scissors gait (flexed hips and knees, legs cross each other)
    • Steppage gait (foot drops, toes scrape ground)
    • Spastic gait (stiff, foot-dragging walk)
    • Propulsive gait (stooped, rigid posture, with head and neck bent forward)
  • Other symptoms
    • Is there pain?
    • If there is pain, is it in the muscles, joints, spine, or other location?
    • Is there a fever?
    • Is there pain in the testicles?
    • Does there appear to be muscle wasting (atrophy)?
    • Is there any paralysis?
    • Are there any muscle spasms?
    • Are there joint deformities?
    • Has there been a recent infection?
  • Medications
    • What medications are being taken?
  • Injury history
    • Have there been any recent or past leg injuries?
    • If there was a leg injury, what type? Was it a broken bone, dislocation, or burn?
    • Has the person had any head injuries, especially one that led to a coma?
    • Has the person had any spinal injuries or nerve injuries?
  • Illness history
    • Are there any known blood vessel problems?
    • Are there any known illnesses such as polio, meningitis, myositis, tumors, or stroke?
    • Have there been any recent infections, including abscesses?
    • Does the person have hemophilia?
    • Has the person been exposed to carbon monoxide?
  • Treatments
    • Have there been any recent vaccinations?
    • Has there been a recent surgery?
    • Has there been any chemotherapy or radiation therapy?
  • Self and family history
    • Are there any known birth defects, such as spina bifida, myelomeningocele, or hip dysplasia?
    • Is there a history of cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy?
    • Has anyone in the family had multiple sclerosis?
    • Has the affected person had any growth problems?
    • Are the legs different lengths?
    • Is there a known problem with scoliosis?

The physical examination will include muscle, bone, and nervous system examination. The health care provider will decide which tests to do based on the results of the physical examination.

References

McGee S. Stance and gait. In: McGee S. Evidence-Based Physical Diagnosis. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2012:chap 6.

Thompson PD Nutt JG. Gait disorders. In: Daroff RB, Fenichel GM, Jankovic J, Mazziotta JC. Bradley’s Neurology in Clinical Practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2012:chap 22.


Review Date: 2/27/2013
Reviewed By: Luc Jasmin, MD, PhD, Department of Neurosurgery, Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles and Department of Anatomy, University of California, San Francisco, CA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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