Sometimes, when you express the pain you feel to people, the response you get is “I understand”. Now, the question is “Do they really understand? ”.
The way you feel knowing that you’re the result of the fusion of gametes of which the gene for bowleggedness (Genu varum) and flat feet (pes planus) ãare dominant is very saddening.
Perhaps in the future, couples would understand the importance of having medical checkups before starting a family and wouldn’t put their money on cockamamie sayings like “his legs will get straightened as he grows older”.
Actually, I’d say they are right, the leg did get straightened after some years but the true resultant trait of the fusion was never recessive. The bowleggedness trait began to manifest and it became very obvious at the time when it was arduous to get medical attention.
Imagine living seven years of your life with constant leg pain. Imagine having to suspend most sporting activities because of leg pain. Imagine not able to dance because of leg pain.
It has become part of your life that you rarely talk about it. And, when you do, it’s because you couldn’t hold it in.
Many would say, “Why not complain to a doctor?”. Well, I did, I’ve met with different doctors and they prescribed diclofenac. Was I supposed to take diclofenac for the rest of my life?
After I made my research and I discovered that I had flat feet. Flat feet is a condition in which the entire sole of the foot touches the floor when standing. This occurs when the arching that places the femur bone in place isn’t formed. The femur bone then rest on the feet bones and as time goes by, the femur bone bends in.
The next time I visited a doctor, I told him my situation, he checked my leg and told me i will need a correction surgery for the arching on my leg and to straighten my legs. Unfortunately, I couldn’t undergo surgery. Apparently, I was past the suitable age. He further explained that it would be an extremely painful experience for me because my bones are already matured and the possibility of my legs being straight wasn’t encouraging. “You will have to use the leg that way”.
I had to accept my fate and continue my life with the pain. You can’t blame anyone for not knowing about the pain that comes with bowleggedness and flat feet, but you can let others know. There are several methods and ways to get your child’s leg arching back. Speak to a doctor and don’t assume.
It’s quite funny and annoying at times when you tell people your leg is paining you and they are like “use pain reliever”, “àlàrìnkà” in yoruba language, “always complaining of your leg paining you, see a doctor then”. Even those close to you feel it’s a normal leg pain they feel when they’ve walked some distance.
I’ve sat down, looked at my feet, observe the effect of the trait, one which is ‘bunions’- A bump or bulge on the first joint of the big toe caused by the swelling of a sac of fluid under the skin.
THERE ARE DIFFERENT CAUSES OF BOWLEG. Not all bow legs straighten up. Some are hereditary and caused by some medical conditions, while some are caused by physical means.
Writer: Samuel Oluwafemi Joseph
University of Lagos, Lagos State, NIGERIA