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Dr. Brandon Macy
Podiatrist - Clark, NJ
1114 Raritan Road
Clark, NJ 07066

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Flat feet are typically associated with an image of a low arch structure.  While many people assume that high arches are good and low arched/flate feet are bad, that is not necessarily true.  The more important factor is the stability of the arch--a rigid arch, whether high or low has shock absorption issues.  An unstable arch is prone to ligament, tendon and muscle fatigue along with deformities due to instability in the propulsive phase of gait.

Flat feet are a common condition of the foot structure. In infants and toddlers, prior to walking, the longitudinal arch is not developed, there's a bit of a fat pad under the arch and the appearance of flat feet can be normal. Most feet are flexible and an arch appears when children reach the age of approximately 4 yeas old. The arch continues to develop throughout childhood, and by adulthood most people have fully developed arches.

Flat feet are generally associated with pronation, a leaning inward of the ankle bones toward the center line--a flattening of the arch as you bear weight on the foot. Shoes of children who pronate, when placed side by side, will lean toward each other (after they have been worn long enough for the foot position to remodel their shape).

"Correction is a poor substitute for Prevention"
Many people with flat feet do not experience pain or other problems. When pain in the foot, ankle, or lower leg does occur, especially in children, the feet should be evaluated.  However, the lack of symptoms in childhood is not a reliable indicator of what is to come as symptoms may not develop until well into the 20s, 30s or later.  Have your child's feet examined if you suspect there may be an issue.  It is unlikely that they will "grow out" of a deformity, so it is best to address these problems at the earliest possible time.

When identified, the use of orthotics in well-built shoes on a daily basis is the best treatment available. In children under the age of 7-8, some correction can be achieved.  Children older than that and into adulthood, the goal of orthotics is to stabilize the otherwise unstable foot, to allow feet to function more efficiently.  This can make a major difference in limiting pain, deformity and arthritic damage that can take place over many years of walking.

Painful progressive flatfoot, otherwise known as tibialis posterior tendonitis or adult-acquired flatfoot, refers to inflammation of the tendon of the tibialis posterior. This condition arises when the tendon becomes inflamed, stretched, or torn. Left untreated, it may lead to severe disability and chronic pain. People are predisposed to tibialis posterior tendonitis if they have flat feet or an abnormal attachment of the tendon to the bones in the midfoot.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, icing, physical therapy, supportive taping, bracing, and custom-made orthotics are common treatments for painful progressive flatfoot. In some cases, a surgery may need to be performed to repair a torn or damaged tendon and restore normal function. In the most severe cases, surgery on the midfoot bones may be necessary to treat the associated flatfoot condition.

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1114 Raritan Road
Clark, NJ 07066

Podiatrist - Clark, Dr. Brandon Macy, 1114 Raritan Road, Clark NJ, 07066 732-382-3470