Orthotics: Prefab or Custom-Made?
If you take a simple stroll down the foot product isle at your local drug store you will find an array of foot products and inserts. You will find inserts for cushion, for comfort, for support and for control. Many questions may cross your mind. What are the differences? Is the $15 insert better than the $7 insert? Are these orthotics? Will they help my foot pain? You may take the time to study the package details closely, but in most instances it doesn't really matter which pair you grab. Most of the inserts at the local drug store are essentially the same.
An insert slips into the shoe and will give you some comfort, cushion and a little support. In some cases, inserts purchased at the drugstore will help alleviate some arch or heel pain and give relief to sore, tired feet. But, an insert is not an orthotic. Orthotics are devices which fit into the shoe and aid in foot function. The most important difference is an orthotic controls abnormal motion and corrects foot function, while an insert will only provide cushion and comfort.
A prefabricated orthotic is a device that is pre-made and designed to fit the most common foot types. Typically, a prefabricated orthotic needs to be purchased at a sports store and they are more expensive than inserts, costing $25-$30. The prefab orthotic is more rigid than an insert and is designed not only to support the arch, but also to help control motion, which will decrease stress on the tendons and ligaments in the arch. Many individuals will do very well with a prefabricated orthotic. Prefab orthotics generally last for one or two years before replacement is necessary.
A functional custom made orthotic is a device that is even more rigid than a prefab orthotic. The custom made orthotic must be rigid to help control the motion in the foot and add support. If the orthotic is soft, the weight of the body would collapse the device and it would no longer function. A custom made orthotic is not only custom molded to your foot and arch, corrective wedges and covers are built into the device to help with motion control and to improve the mechanics of the foot. Individuals with flatfeet, tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, certain foot deformities, knee, hip and back problems may benefit from custom made functional orthotics. The orthotic should make standing, walking, jogging or running more comfortable. Custom made functional orthotics will generally last 7-12 years before needing to be replaced, and can cost between $300-$600.
Functional orthotics are a successful treatment for many problems affecting the lower extremity. In a recent article in the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association, 75% of patients surveyed had good to excellent results using functional orthotics to treat heel pain, arch pain, arthritis, bunions, pain from flatfeet or high arches, knee, hip and back pain. A recent article in USA Weekend magazine stated the opposite. The article referenced a study in Foot & Ankle International in which researchers followed 874 healthy, young Israeli army recruits without foot problems. The recruits were given soft custom, semi-rigid custom, soft prefab or semi-rigid prefab orthotics to wear in their boots during basic training. The researchers found no difference in the development of foot problems between the custom made orthotic group versus the prefab orthotic group. The conclusion from this study is that custom made orthotics will not help prevent foot problems from developing. What is important to understand is this study did not evaluate individuals with foot pain or foot problems. The population evaluated was a group of young, healthy, active individuals without any existing foot problems. Therefore, we cannot conclude from this study that prefab orthotics treat foot conditions better than custom-made orthotics.
Individuals with plantar fasciitis (heel and arch pain) who also have flatfeet usually respond best to custom-made orthotics. Certain types of tendonitis respond well to orthotics and other types require orthotics. Posterior tibial tendonitis is the tearing and inflammation of the tendon that helps to hold up the arch. When this tendon is overstressed by arch collapse it cannot heal. Custom made orthotics are essential in the treatment of this condition.
Individuals with high arches may also require orthotics, but they do not respond as well. Custom made orthotics can help slow the progression of bunions and hammertoes, but they will not prevent this process. Orthotics may help with some pain at a bunion, but they will not "cure" the bunion. When the motion in the foot is contributing to the problem, orthotics are generally recommended. If the foot is stable and does not require support, the bunion, hammertoe, neuroma, tendonitis or even plantar fasciitis may not require custom made orthotics for treatment. These individuals may do well with a pre-fabricated orthotic. If you do not have foot pain or an existing foot condition, a custom made orthotic is not necessary for prevention of foot problems.
A custom made accommodative orthotic is soft and designed to reduce pressure and prevent excess friction. Diabetics can develop numbness and loss of circulation in the feet. This numbness and circulation loss puts them at risk for developing open sores on the feet called ulcerations. To help prevent excess rub and friction in certain areas on the feet, accommodative orthotics are recommended. Diabetics who do not have numbness or circulation loss (as diagnosed by their doctor) do not need to have accommodative orthotics, unless the foot has a deformity, like a bunion or hammertoe, then accommodative orthotics are necessary.
Both types of custom-made orthotics are formed by taking a mold of the foot. A functional orthotic mold is fabricated by wrapping the foot in plaster. The foot is held in a corrected position while the plaster is setting. To obtain an accommodative orthotic mold, the patient steps into a foam box. An impression of the foot in a standing position is then created. The molds are sent to a lab and scanned into a computer. A reverse image is produced and the computer generates an image of the foot in neutral position. The computer adjusts the image based on the corrections recommended. A model of the foot is then cut out, in some cases out of wood. The orthotic material is pressed over the foot model and the orthotic is created. The most common material for a semi-rigid custom made orthotic is polypropylene, but other materials, such as graphite are used. A foam-like material is typically used for custom-made accommodative orthotics.
The bottom line is that if you have foot pain, a foot deformity or condition, let your podiatrist evaluate you and decide if orthotics should be part of the treatment. If your insurance will not cover the orthotics and you cannot afford custom made orthotics, consider trying prefabricated orthotics. If you are looking to help prevent foot problems or looking for some extra support, a prefab orthotics is a good option for you, especially if you are active in sports. If you are just looking for a little extra cushion and comfort, an insert at your local drug store will be your best bet.
Christine Dobrowolski is a podiatrist and the author of Those Aching Feet: Your Guide to Diagnosis and Treatment of Common Foot Problems. To learn more about Dr. Dobrowolski and her book visit http://www.skipublishing.com. For more information on prefabricated orthotics visit http://www.northcoastfootcare.com.
Bextra and Vioxx Withdrawal Spurs Price Increase Among Rivals
The market for painkillers is huge. People don't like pain and inflammation, and last year Americans spent nearly $4 billion on just two of them ? Vioxx and Bextra. Those two drugs, part of a family of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs known as COX-2 inhibitors, were withdrawn from the market recently amid concerns that they can cause heart attacks and strokes. The loss of these two drugs to the marketplace is huge, as they were the two largest sellers in a fairly narrow field. COX-2 inhibitors differ from traditional non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in that they inhibit production of the COX-2 enzyme that causes inflammation but do not interfere with COX-1, the enzyme that protects the stomach lining. Patients who use these drugs are thought to suffer less from internal discomfort and bleeding than those who took traditional anti-inflammatories, such as naproxen and ibuprofen.
First Step To Addiction Recovery
The first step to over comming any addiction is to detoxify the body of the addictive substance. Whether it's herion, crack, or meth detoxifcation of the liver is essential to addiction recovery. There are several methods to bring the chemicals out of your body. One is sauna or sweat therapy.
Mend Your Arthritis Pain Relief
=====KNOW YOUR ARTHRITIS=====
The Unique Benefits of Medical Adjustable Beds
With more medical advantages, an adjustable bed finds more functions in a hospital or a nursing home. It provides relief to people who are bed-ridden or those who have to stay in bed for long hours and can be adjusted either manually or electrically.
Oral Chelation ? Is It Better Than Intravenous Chelation?
Intravenous Chelation was the most common practice until a few years back; however, with the introduction of oral chelation it became the preferred choice of most patients and doctors. There were a number of contributing factors to this shift of choice, the prime aspect being the cost factor. Though intravenous chelation would not cost you a fortune, still the cost will be way above the price of Oral Chelation. This initiated the use of oral chelation among the customers who were using intravenous chelation. Once they started using it on a regular basis the other benefits of oral chelation became more evident.
Spin Control: What to Do When Youre Dizzy
Dizzy Dean, the great baseball pitcher of the 1930s-1940s, once quipped, "The doctors x-rayed my head and found nothing."
Rezulin Liver Failure Causes FDA to Recall Drug
Rezulin, a prescription type 2 diabetes drug has been withdrawn from the market by the FDA. New drugs have come out which offer the benefits that Rezulin provides but without such damaging side effects. Rezulin caused extreme damage to the liver that often resulted in liver failure. Liver failure was so widespread amongst Rezulin users that there has been progressively increasing encouragement for these people to have frequent liver function tests to monitor liver damage. In fact, Rezulin users are 1200 times more likely to have liver failure than non-users of the drug.
Pediatric Emergency Contact Notifications Made Easier
For the head of the trauma department at one of America's top pediatric facilities, Chicago's Children's Memorial Hospital, having to notifying parents that their children have been the victims of trauma or identify pediatric Jane Does, is an every day occurrence. But just because they look like they're handling it well, doesn't mean that it ever becomes routine.
Lunesta For Insomnia: A Guide To Compare Generic Lunesta ( Eszopiclone )
We all know that there's no such thing as cheap Lunesta, but if you'd like to save money without sacrificing quality, you may want to buy Eszopiclone instead. Eszopiclone is the generic version of Lunesta, the only prescription sleep aid approved for long term use.
?Do you suffer from Osteoarthritis? Here?s how to tell!?
The most common type of arthritis is osteoarthritis (OA). This type of arthritis is commonly referred to as wear and tear arthritis or degenerative arthritis."
An Introduction to Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a very common condition, but in some ways it is still a mystery. There are many different theories about what causes the syndrome, and different doctors will give you different reasons for your illness ? anything from stress to bad bacteria to food intolerance. And once you have been diagnosed, there is no set form of treatment ? instead, sufferers tend to try two or three supplements or therapies to find a combination that works for them.
When Your John Doe Is Homeless
The patient, known only as John Doe, was difficult to see under the hodgepodge of tubing, the quiet clicking of the ventilator the room's only sound.
Treating Lazy Eye in Older Children
Many eye doctors believed until recently that if a child's vision was impaired because of a "lazy eye," the condition could not be corrected past the age of six or seven years. However, a study funded by the National Eye Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, has found that amblyopia or "lazy eye" treatment can be effective in children age seven through 17. In fact, many of the 517 children studied at 49 eye centers showed improvement in their vision.
At Last! Good News For Gout Sufferers!
Gout, an arthritis affliction with its roots in antiquity, has not always been easy to treat. The traditional medicines employed for gout have been non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), colchicines, probenicid (Benemid), and allopurinol (Zyloprim).
Strong Pain Relief - Powerful & Effective Natural Pain Management Alternative
The recent removal of several high profile and popular prescription pain medications of the same pharmaceutical family, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, from the buyer's market has left many people searching for a safer alternative for powerful, fast and effective pain relief. The most recent removal was Pfizer's pulling of Bextra, citing serious skin reactions, sometimes fatal, and two others, Vioxx and Celebrex have been linked to heart related risks. The dangerous side effects of this particular family of medications is definitely cause for alarm, and has many seeking alternatives that will manage their pain effectively, without the serious risks of several pharmaceutical pain killers.
Benefits of a Virtual Top Doctor Consultant
Looking for the best doctor to suite your medical needs can be a problem, especially if you don't have time and you need to research the doctor's credentials. Whether you're in urgent need of help, or just need a second opinion, I will show you how to access all the information you need ? through the Internet's Virtual Top Doctor Consultant.
What is Bextra? (FDA Recalled Drug)
Bextra, also known as valdecoxib, is a prescribed medication used to alleviate the problems associated with arthritis and other inflammation-related conditions. The drug helps reduce the pain of swelling and fever without causing stomach irritation like aspirin.
Stevens Johnson Syndrome (SJS) is a severe and deadly allergic reaction to certain drugs, some proscription and some over the counter, which causes the severe burning of skin and mucosal membranes from the inside out. 15% of people who develop Stevens Johnson Syndrome will die as a direct result. Many drugs which have been known to cause SJS do not have warning labels notifying users about the very real danger of Stevens Johnson Syndrome. If you or a loved one has SJS, a Stevens Johnson Syndrome lawyer can help you receive financial compensation.
Vioxx, Celebrex, and Bextra: An editorial regarding dangerous drugs
A Guide to Arthritis Pain Relief
In a recent survey on pain conducted by the Stanford University Medical Center, arthritis pain was cited as the chief complaint among America's seniors, with thirty-two percent of the senior population listing arthritis as the specific cause of their suffering. Arthritis does strike children and young adults as well, although it afflicts the mature segment of the population more frequently. It is estimated that 15% of the American adult population suffer from arthritis, and this number is rising, increasing the demand for arthritis pain relief.
|home | site map|