Limping: Symptoms & Signs

Limping refers to any type of difficulty that occurs while walking. Limping can be considered to be a form of walking that favors the use of one leg over another and is most commonly due to diseases of or damage to the legs and feet, including all of the structures such as muscles, bones, joints, blood vessels, and nerves that make up the lower extremities.

Limping can result from either an acute (having a recent onset) or chronic (long-term) condition. Injuries such as bone fractures, sprains, and strains are common causes of limping. Arthritis and congenital malformations (birth defects) are other potential causes. Limping can also result from conditions that damage the central nervous system, such as cerebral palsy. Depending on the precise cause, limping may be treatable in some cases or its severity may be reduced through the use of medications and/or surgical interventions.

Other causes of limping

  • Blister
  • Bone Tumors
  • Legg-Perthes Disease
  • Muscular Dystrophy
  • Plantar Warts
  • Slipped Capital Femoral Epiphysis
  • Spinal Cord Tumor
  • Spinal Stenosis
  • Trauma/Injury

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Medically Reviewed on 9/10/2019
References
Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.
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