Sunday, December 22, 2013

Comfort Shoes Make Knee Pain Worse, New Study Says

If you have knee pain, or arthritis in your feet, ankles, or knees, you may be more confused about what to put on your feet after reading this article. 
A new small study was recently conducted on people who suffer from osteoarthritis in the knee and the results indicate that wearing clogs and comfort shoes puts more of a strain on the wearer when compared to walking barefoot or in flip flops. 
So for anyone with this condition who has gone out and purchased expensive and specialty shoes this may have been a waste of their money. Examples of "comfort" shoes include Dansko, Ecco, Birkenstock, and Aerosoles and as a group they tend to include cushioning under the pad of the foot and insoles for the arch. However, the study says that when arthritis sufferers wear these shoes, they change the wearer's gait and cause them pain.
We typically recommend comfort shoes to patients who have foot pain, or specific foot conditions that would benefit from wearing these particular type of shoe, so we were surprised to hear of this new study. In general, before you purchase any shoes, it is important to know what type of foot you have- are you a high arch, flat footed, or have a normal arch? Do you have foot deformities that prevent you from wearing specific types of shoes? Not everyone's foot is designed to wear the exact same shoe. 
Just because a shoe is expensive doesn't mean it is a good quality or even right for your foot. When a podiatrist tells you to pick out a shoe that is supportive, you can often find these items at various price points- you don't have to run out and purchase the most expensive one. If you have any questions as to what types of shoes are best for your feet, make an appointment with a podiatrist to discuss your options. 
We'll be interested to see if this study, even though small, has any ramifications in the podiatric world. 
Reference: Medical Daily
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