Using Biomechanical Assessment Information

In my previous blog we discussed the purpose of Biomechanical assessments and how they can be used to determine the root cause of any particular lower limb condition such as Plantar Fasciitis or Runners knee to name a few.

In this edition we are going to have a brief look how the information collected in a Biomechanical assessment is used to treat a particular condition. This is usually achieved through designing a custom foot orthotic to control the abnormal foot mechanics responsible for the onset symptoms.

The first step in this process is for the Podiatrist to analyse the measurements taken during the assessment. The aim of the analysis is to identify any abnormal foot mechanics and how this results in excess stress being placed on the injured structures.

Once the specific foot mechanics that require control are determined, a prescription can be designed to control the foot mechanics and stresses on the injured structures minimised.

An important factor that has to be taken into account before this prescription can be sent to the lab; is what activity the Orthotic is designed for and what shoe wear the orthoses must be required to fit.

So for example an orthotic designed for running will have different design goals and parameters compared to that designed for office shoes.

Shoe wear can be one of the more challenging aspects, as often we are asked to have an orthotic designed to fit a tighter fashionable shoes such as court shoes. With careful consideration to the prescription this can be achieved with the required control to successfully treat the symptoms.

An important point to make however; is that as a shoe becomes tighter, the bulk of the Orthotic  has to be kept especially low, which can result in a compromise in the foot control afforded by the Orthotic in order to fit the shoe comfortably.

The finalised prescription is then sent to the lab for manufacture; this is accompanied with a digital scan of the foot which is taken during the Biomechanical assessment, which allows the lab to produce an Orthotic which is completely bespoke to a person’s individual requirements.

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