Painful Gait, Antalgic Gait


A patient with antalgic gait does not want to spend time on the affected leg due to the pain. The patient wants to get their weight off the affected extremity. With antalgic gait, there is an abnormal shortened stance phase on one of their steps. The swing phase is enhanced on the affected side and may be shortened on the normal leg in order to get the normal leg back to the ground. This is done in order to lift the painful extremity off of the ground. When pain is increased by walking, it leads to an antalgic gait. An antalgic gait can be caused by multiple factors due to pain in any part of the lower extremity. It is usually caused from hip or knee pathology or from severe disc radiation symptoms. The patient is guarding from the pain in the involved lower extremity. The pain can be helped by using a cane on the opposite side of the painful extremity. When pain arises from the hip joint, there is a lurch of the trunk towards the painful side during the stance phase. The center of gravity of the body moves towards the painful hip. This will decrease the moment arm of body weight to the hip joint, and this will reduce the total force on the hip. This should not be confused with Trendelenburg gait, which results from abductor muscle weakness.

Nabil Ebraheim, MD

You Might Also Enjoy...

Symptoms and What to Do When You Have a Fracture

Have you ever hurt yourself and wondered if you broke a bone? Sometimes the signs are obvious, but other times you may not be sure. Don't walk around not knowing the symptoms. Keep reading to learn more about fractures and available treatments.

What Type of Fracture Do You Have?

If you’ve ever suffered a broken bone, you know the pain can be excruciating. However, did you know that there are many different types of fractures that you could sustain? Read on to find out more about deciphering fracture types and treatment options.

Understanding What’s Involved in Reconstructive Surgery

Suffering from arthritis and pain makes everyday living tough, especially when it involves your joints. Reconstructive surgery gets you fixed up and back to the life you enjoy. Read on to learn what this surgery involves and if it’s right for you.

Orthopedic Care and Covid19: What You Should Know

When injury strikes, it’s usually at the most inconvenient time. Not only that, but COVID-19 has made getting treatment even more difficult. Read on to find out what’s changed in orthopedics, and how you can keep yourself safe while still receiving care.

When Your Knee Becomes More of a Liability than an Asset

You don't know how important your knees are until you begin having problems. You may experience pain and stiffness that impedes your mobility. Find out about what you can do when your knees are giving you more problems than you can handle.

Reasons You Shouldn’t Ignore Joint Pain

Your joints are the reason you're able to walk up a flight of stairs or go for a run in the morning. So when they begin to become stiff and painful, you may find yourself in a world of hurt. Find out when to seek treatment for achy joints.