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Late walkers: 23 month old not walking cause for concern

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Your question:
My son a healthy 23 month old who is still not walking. He has gradually progressed through the requisite stages but his balance seems quite off. Is there something that can rule out an inner-ear problem? He has also been ear infection free up to this point in his life. The expert answers:
This is actually a concerning scenario, with such a prolonged delay of walking. Although I would believe it wise at some point to assess the child's inner ear function, you should also consider other causes of delayed motor milestones. Included in this grouping would be muscle and/or neurologic disorders, which are more likely to explain your child's problem.

To answer your question regarding inner ear disease, a visit to a pediatric ENT would be a starting point. This physician, after microscopic exam of the ear, might choose to recommend an imaging test (e.g. MRI or CT) and also a nerve conduction study of the inner ear. This look at how the inner ear is anatomically structured as well as how the inner ear functions would provide a good analysis of the inner ear and its function.

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