Orthotics For Treatment of Low Back Pain

Dr. Garreth MacDonald

Very often when someone has Low Back Pain, they don’t often consider that their feet, and more specifically their abnormal foot biomechanics, may be playing a role in their Low Back Pain. Dr. Garreth MacDonald, Eugene Chiropractor, has been using a scan device from Footmaxx to analyse patient’s foot biomechanics for the past 15 years.

This system is strinkingly different when compared to a traditional method of placing your foot in a mold to capture the shape of your foot. The orthotic is then fabricated based on a lot of “guess work” on the part of the designer as to what needs to be done to the orthotic and what is called “postings”. This method is HIGHLY inaccurate, right from the start.

This older Youtube video shows the process of the foot pad/force plate analysis.

A recent article from the journal Archives of Internal Medicine and Rehabilitation, April 2017, titled “Shoe Orthotics for the Treatment of Chronic Low Back Pain: A Randomized Controlled Trial” made several statements including:

  1. “Foot dysfunction should not be overlooked as a potential contributing factor in treating individuals with low back pain and dysfunction”
  2. “The addition of chiropractic care to the orthotic treatment demonstrated better outcomes than orthotic care alone”
  3. “Six weeks of prescription shoe orthotics significantly improved back pain and dysfunction compared to no treatment. The addition of chiropractic care led to higher improvements in function”

I have observed over my years of practice the importance of the whole-body kinetic chain and how altered ambulatory kinetics can cause and perpetuate chronic low back pain, neck pain, headaches, TMJ pain, etc. I am increasingly committed to the evaluation and use of orthotics to correct anatomical leg length inequality and/or physiological (functional) leg length inequality secondary to foot problems, especially pronation. A uniqueness to the chiropractic approach to the management of many syndromes is awareness of whole-body kinematics and their relationship to foot biomechanics.

The use of custom orthotics is logical, quick and efficient. I use them daily.

Dr. Garreth MacDonald

Chiropractic Physician

Cascade Health Center

Eugene Chiropractor

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