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The Safety and Efficacy of Pain Checker Socks in the Treatment of Mild-to-Moderate Foot Pain

A Clinical Trial

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  • 1 Jennings Institute for Clinical Research, Fort Lee, NJ.
  • | 2 New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY.
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Background: Heel pain, bunion pain, and other forms of foot pain syndromes are one of the more common reasons a patient visits a podiatrist. Numerous methods are currently available to attempt to achieve pain relief, including pharmaceuticals, magnets, heat, and electrical stimulation. A textile company developed Pain Checker socks (Pain Checker Health Wear, Cresskill, New Jersey), which contains a material that may counter the circuit of pain and oppose the effect, thereby stopping the conduction of pain.

Methods: The purpose of this placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of Pain Checker socks in the treatment of mild-to-moderate foot pain. Fifty patients were enrolled, half on active and half on placebo socks. The subjects were evaluated at baseline, 2, 4, and 6 weeks of treatment.

Results: There was no statistically significant difference in disability, pain, or activity scales between treatment groups, although only 5% of the treatment group received no pain relief on visual analog scale during the trial, while 38% of the placebo group received no pain relief.

Conclusion: Although there was no difference in pain relief, the Pain Checker socks were found to be safe and scored high in patient satisfaction. The unique fiber content and construction of the socks may have contributed to the placebo analgesia. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 98(4): 278–282, 2008)

Corresponding author: Maureen B. Jennings, DPM, MS, Jennings Institute for Clinical Research, 1451 Hwy 88, Ste 8A, Brick, NJ 08724. (E-mail: jenningsresearch@verizon.net)