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Background: Podiatric physicians are increasingly using pedobarographs to measure plantar pressure. However, normal values of static pedobarographic variables for healthy men and women are lacking, which makes it difficult to evaluate abnormal foot positioning in standing patients with low- or high-arched feet or painful feet.
Methods: During upright standing, a computerized pedobarograph measured the maximal (Pmax) and mean (Pmean) plantar pressures, total foot area, and forefoot and rearfoot areas in 84 healthy women and 84 healthy men, aged 18 to 83 years. After calibration of the pedobarograph, a correction factor was applied to area measurements, and data repeatability was assessed.
Results: The Pmax and Pmean values were not correlated with age but with weight, body mass index, and shoe size. Total foot area was significantly higher in male participants and correlated with body weight, body mass index, and shoe size but not with age. In both sexes, forefoot area was significantly lower than rearfoot area. Significant positive correlations were observed between forefoot and rearfoot areas and weight and shoe size. The forefoot-rearfoot area ratio did not vary with sex, weight, shoe size, and age.
Conclusions: These data provide relationships between Pmax, Pmean, and foot areas and weight and shoe size and clearly indicate no age dependence of pedobarographic data. They also provide stable values of the forefoot-rearfoot area ratio. These data should help clinicians evaluate abnormal foot placement in standing patients.
UMR MD2 (Dysoxia and Hyperactivity), Faculty of Medicine, Aix-Marseille University, Marseille, France.
Corresponding author: Yves Jammes, MD, DSci, UMR MD2, Faculty of Medicine Bd. Pierre Dramard, Aix-Marseille University, 13916 cedex 20 Marseille, France. (E-mail: email@example.com)