Leg Length Research
Leg length discrepancy (LLD) is a common problem for many people, and the signs can be subtle or blatant depending on the severity of the condition. Leg length inequality can have an impact on everything from neck pain to spine issues to ankle pain, and this is why it is often associated with vertebral subluxation. Many people visit the chiropractor due to headaches and pain in the neck and back only to discover after a complete evaluation that the underlying cause is leg length discrepancy.
In some cases, LLD is caused by trauma, surgery, fractured growth plates, or other issues that you have no control over, such as irregular growth spurts and natural aging. In other instances, you can cause the leg length problems from carrying heavy items like computer bags or purses over the same shoulder for years, sitting on a thick wallet, or a decreased general health. You should never ignore leg length discrepancy because it can get worse over time and only using medication is not going to correct the problem but simply cover up the symptoms.
How LLD Is Treated
A study shows evidence that LLD is a manifestation of fluctuating asymmetry, and this can lead to back and neck problems. You’ll find a variety of treatments that can improve the imbalance, from braces to surgery, but a chiropractor uses natural and specialized techniques based on whether you have directional or fluctuating asymmetry, or anti-symmetry. The right leg has a greater tendency to be shorter than the left, but a complete assessment will be done to ensure the proper spinal alignments and chiropractic services are applied regardless of the type of LLD you have and which leg is affected. A chiropractor also treats the areas that have been affected from the leg length discrepancy, such as the lower back and pelvis.
Chiropractors Can Treat Leg Length Issues
Chiropractors use leg length inequality assessments to identify neurological disturbances and the Direct Non-Force Technique as well as Thompson and Activator techniques to locate where subluxation is occurring within the body. To determine the reliability of the inter-examiner and the four techniques, a case study focused on the examination of thirty participants, some with LLD and others without it. The results found “acceptable repeatability” and agreement for the prone hip/leg extension test when multiple chiropractors performed the evaluations.
Once the underlying issues and locations of the subluxation have been identified in the body, the chiropractor will guide you through the different spinal manipulation techniques and lifestyle changes that you should make to progressively correct the problem. Surgery and heavy medication should always be last resort.
Whether you are aware you have LLD or you have noticed the signs of subluxation, or if you are simply interested in optimizing body function and overall health, reach out to a chiropractor to get the relief and guidance you need for the healthiest version of your body.
Knutson, G.A., Owens, E.F. “Leg Length Alignment Asymmetry in a Non-Clinical Population and Its Correlation to a Decrease In General Health As Measured by the SF-12: A Pilot Study.” Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research, 2004 Nov: 1-5.
Schwartzbauer, M., Hart, J. “Inter-Examiner Reliability of Leg Length Inequality Assessments.” Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research, 2011 July: 51-56.
Troyanovich, S.A., Miller, K.J. “A Clinical Study of Fluctuating Asymmetry and Leg Length Inequality.” Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research, 2011 Sept: 92-98.