A foot that overpronates acts like a loose bag of bones during the walking cycle. This makes this type of foot very flexible but inefficient. The foot has to work much harder to propel the body,
fatiguing easily and placing mechanical stresses on the lower body. We like to use the analogy of digging a hole in the dirt. Overpronating feet are like using a broom to dig the hole. It won?t break
down quickly, but you will be digging for a very long time, or until eventually wear and tear will take effect. Wouldn?t you rather have a shovel to work with. This is in essence what an orthotic can
do for your feet. This is why orthotics have become an evidence based treatment for so many foot ailments, as they can effectively manage overpronation.
There are many causes of flat feet. Obesity, pregnancy or repetitive pounding on a hard surface can weaken the arch leading to over-pronation. Often people with flat feet do not experience discomfort
immediately, and some never suffer from any discomfort at all. However, when symptoms develop and become painful, walking becomes awkward and causes increased strain on the feet and calves.
Common conditions that develop with prolonged overpronation typically include plantar fasciitis, achilles tendonitis, shin splints, posterior tibial stress syndrome and even IT band syndrome. With
long term neglect you may see the development of bunyons, foot deformities and early onset of hip and knee arthritis.
At some point you may find the pain to much or become frustrated. So what are you options? Chances are your overpronation has led to some type of injury if there's pain. Your best bet is to consult
with someone who knows feet. Start with your pediatrist, chiropodist or chiropractor. They'll be able to diagnose and treat the injury and give you more specific direction to better support your
feet. One common intervention is a custom foot orthotic. Giving greater structural support than a typical shoe these shoe inserts can dramatically reduce overpronation.
Non Surgical Treatment
When you see the doctor, he or she will likely perform a complete examination of your feet and watch you walk. The doctor will need to take x-rays to determine the cause of your flat feet. In some
cases, further imaging may be needed, especially if your symptoms are severe and sudden in nature. Once you are properly diagnosed, your doctor will create an appropriate treatment plan. There are
several options to correct overpronation, such as orthotics. In many cases, overpronation can be treated with non-surgical methods and over-the-counter orthotics. In severe cases, however,
custom-made orthotics may work better. Orthotics provide arch support and therefore prevent collapse of the arch with weight bearing. They are made of materials such as spongy rubber or hard plastic.
Your doctor will also want to examine your footwear to ensure they fit properly and offer enough medial support. Extra support and stability can be achieved with footwear that has a firm heel
counter. If you are experiencing pain, you should be able to use over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen to relieve symptoms.
Hyperpronation can only be properly corrected by internally stabilizing the ankle bone on the hindfoot bones. Several options are available. Extra-Osseous TaloTarsal Stabilization (EOTTS) There are
two types of EOTTS procedures. Both are minimally invasive with no cutting or screwing into bone, and therefore have relatively short recovery times. Both are fully reversible should complications
arise, such as intolerance to the correction or prolonged pain. However, the risks/benefits and potential candidates vary. Subtalar Arthroereisis. An implant is pushed into the foot to block the
excessive motion of the ankle bone. Generally only used in pediatric patients and in combination with other procedures, such as tendon lengthening. Reported removal rates vary from 38% - 100%,
depending on manufacturer. HyProCure Implant. A stent is placed into a naturally occurring space between the ankle bone and the heel bone/midfoot bone. The stent realigns the surfaces of the bones,
allowing normal joint function. Generally tolerated in both pediatric and adult patients, with or without adjunct soft tissue procedures. Reported removal rates, published in scientific journals vary