Over-pronation, or flat feet, is a common biomechanical problem that occurs in the walking process when a person?s arch collapses upon weight bearing. This motion can cause extreme stress or
inflammation on the plantar fascia, possibly causing severe discomfort and leading to other foot problems.
Generally fallen arches are a condition inherited from one or both parents. In addition, age, obesity, and pregnancy cause our arches to collapse. Being in a job that requires long hours of standing
and/or walking (e.g. teaching, retail, hospitality, building etc) contributes to this condition, especially when standing on hard surfaces like concrete floors. Last, but not least unsupportive
footwear makes our feet roll in more than they should.
If ignored, overpronation can lead to complications such as hammer toes, corns and calluses, shin splints, hallux rigidus and many more foot and lower leg problems. Hammer toes appear when the toes
are placed under too much pressure and the ligaments and muscles in the toes begin to reduce in size, leading to the curvature of the toes and making them look like little hammers. Overpronators can
develop hammertoes if they don?t wear an appropriate pair of shoes. Corns and calluses also appear as a result of overpronation. They form in response to excess pressure, and overpronators may find
that they have excessive hard skin on the balls of the feet and inside edge of the big toe. It is the body?s way of protecting against excessive forces and friction. They can be painful.
You can test for pronation by looking at the leg and foot from the back. Normally you can see the Achilles Tendon run straight down the leg into the heel. If the foot is pronated, the tendon will run
straight down the leg, but when it lies on the heel it will twist outward. This makes the inner ankle bone much more prominent than the outer ankle bone.
Non Surgical Treatment
An orthotic is a device inserted inside the shoe to assist in prevention and/or rehabilitation of injury. Orthotics support the arch, prevent or correct functional deformities, and improve
biomechanics. Prescription foot orthoses are foot orthoses which are fabricated utilizing a three dimensional representation of the plantar foot and are specifically constructed for an individual
using both weightbearing and nonweightbearing measurement parameters and using the observation of the foot and lower extremity functioning during weightbearing activities. Non-prescription foot
orthoses are foot which are fabricated in average sizes and shapes in an attempt to match the most prevalent sizes and shapes of feet within the population without utilizing a three dimensional
representation of the plantar foot of the individual receiving the orthosis.
Subtalar Arthroereisis. The ankle and hindfoot bones/midfoot bones around the joint are fused, locking the bones in place and preventing all joint motion. This may also be done in combination with
fusion at other joints. This is a very aggressive option usually reserved for extreme cases where no joint flexibility is present and/or the patient has severe arthritic changes in the joint.