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Jun 3

Written by: Larry Huppin, DPM
6/3/2010 1:57 PM

Providing Realistic Expectations about Orthotic Therapy

We spend a lot of time educating our patients about the benefits of orthotic therapy. We spend just as much time ensuring that our patients understand the limitations of their new orthoses.

We try to provide our patients with very realistic expectations about some of the limitations of orthotic therapy. By making sure that they understand these limitations before making the decision to proceed with casting for the orthoses, we eliminate most disappointment and misunderstanding. Just a few of the issues we raise with patients are:

  • New shoes will likely be necessary as we cannot guarantee that the orthoses will fit in any shoes they currently own.
  • Women need to choose whether their first pair of orthoses will be used in dress or athletic shoes. They will not work for both
  • Orthoses are not a cure, just a tool to reduce stress on injured tissue. Additional treatments will likely be necessary.
  • We will guarantee comfort, but not clinical outcomes
  • Adjustments for comfort may be necessary
  • Adjustments for shoe fit may be necessary
  • What makes the foot feel better could cause problems elsewhere (the knee for example)
Be sure to review with your patients both the positive and negative aspects of orthotic therapy. A little education ahead of time will dramatically reduce problems later on.


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