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Foot Typology, Dynamic and Static Weight Distribution, and Radiographic Changes After Subtalar Arthroereisis in Juvenile Symptomatic Flexible Flat Feet

      ABSTRACT

      Flexible flatfoot is among the most common skeletal disorders in childhood. This study describes the dynamic and static correction effects of subtalar arthroereisis in adolescents with flexible symptomatic flatfeet in comparison to normal subjects as well as to results before and after removal of metal. Eighteen adolescents with 25 symptomatic flexible flatfeet were treated surgically with a subtalar arthroereisis at a mean of 12.5 (10-16) years. At follow-up (mean 3.9 years, range 0.4-8), patients filled out the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society questionnaire, received radiographs and were examined using dynamic and static pedobarography as well as static hindfoot axis examination. Results were compared to healthy controls (n = 13; 26 feet). Surgically treated feet (n = 25) had better questionnaire results after surgery than before, but lower scores than healthy feet. Radiological parameters improved significantly after surgery. Removal of metal did not influence post-surgical results (follow-up 2.8 years). Surgically treated feet had larger contact areas than normal feet with predominance to the midfoot region. The relative maximum force, relative peak pressure and contact time were higher in the midfoot of treated feet compared to controls. When comparing pedobarography data of treated versus untreated feet of the same patients (subgroup n = 11 feet), there were no differences. Subtalar arthroereisis was able to effectively treat symptomatic flexible flatfeet in this population. Results improved significantly evaluating a questionnaire, radiographs, dynamic and static weight distribution, but were still worse than results of healthy feet. There was no relapse after removal of metal.

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