The heel fat pad has a unique structure that is important for its shock-absorbing function. Loss of elasticity and changes in the thickness of the heel pad have been suggested as causes of heel pain. The present study of a population with heel pain shows the relationship between the thickness and elasticity of the heel fat pad and age, sex, obesity, duration of symptoms, subcalcaneal spurs, and noninvasive conservative treatment. Of 182 patients with heel pain who visited an outpatient clinic during a 3-year period, 50 (67 heels) fulfilling specific criteria were treated with a combination of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, contrast baths, stretching exercises, and change of footwear habits. Patients were followed up for 1 year. Delayed healing, increased thickness, and decreased elasticity of the heel fat pad were found in patients who were older than 40 years, who had symptoms for longer than 12 months before treatment, and who had a large subcalcaneal spur. An increase in heel fat pad thickness with aging and increased body weight reduce the elasticity of the heel fat pad. In addition, subcalcaneal spurs diminish the elasticity of the heel fat pad and play a role in the formation of heel pain. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 94(1): 47-52, 2004)
Current medical nomenclature is often based on the early history of the condition, when the true etiology of the disease or condition was not known. Sadly, this incorrect terminology can become inextricably woven into the lexicon of mainstream medicine. More important, when this is the case, the terminology itself can become integrated into current clinical decision making and ultimately into surgical intervention for the condition. “Morton’s neuroma” is perhaps the most striking example of this nomenclature problem in foot and ankle surgery. We aimed to delineate the historical impetus for the terminology still being used today for this condition and to suggest appropriate terminology based on our current understanding of its pathogenesis. We concluded that this symptom complex should be given the diagnosis of nerve compression and be further distinguished by naming the involved nerve, such as compression of the interdigital nerve to the third web space or compression of the third common plantar digital nerve. Although the nomenclature becomes longer, the pathogenesis is correct, and treatment decisions can be made accordingly. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 95(3): 298–306, 2005)
Medial longitudinal arch integrity after prolonged running has yet to be well documented. We sought to quantify changes in medial longitudinal arch kinematics before and after a 45-min run in healthy recreational runners.
Thirty runners performed barefoot seated, standing, and running trials before and after a 45-min shod treadmill run. Navicular displacement, arch lengthening, and the arch height index were used to quantify arch deformation, and the arch rigidity index was used to quantify arch stiffness.
There were no statistically significant differences in mean (95% confidence interval) values for navicular displacement (5.6 mm [4.7–6.4 mm]), arch lengthening (3.2 mm [2.6–3.9 mm]), change in arch height index (0.015 [0.012–0.018]), or arch rigidity index (0.95 [0.94–0.96]) after the 45-min run (all multivariate analyses of variance P ≥ .065).
Because there were no statistically significant changes in arch deformation or rigidity, the structures of a healthy, intact medial longitudinal arch are capable of either adapting to cyclical loading or withstanding a 45-min run without compromise.
Randomized trials must be of high methodological quality to yield credible, actionable findings. The main aim of this project was to evaluate whether there has been an improvement in the methodological quality of randomized trials published in the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association (JAPMA).
Randomized trials published in JAPMA during a 15-year period (January 1999 to December 2013) were evaluated. The methodological quality of randomized trials was evaluated using the PEDro scale (scores range from 0 to 10, with 0 being lowest quality). Linear regression was used to assess changes in methodological quality over time.
A total of 1,143 articles were published in JAPMA between January 1999 and December 2013. Of these, 44 articles were reports of randomized trials. Although the number of randomized trials published each year increased, there was only minimal improvement in their methodological quality (mean rate of improvement = 0.01 points per year). The methodological quality of the trials studied was typically moderate, with a mean ± SD PEDro score of 5.1 ± 1.5. Although there were a few high-quality randomized trials published in the journal, most (84.1%) scored between 3 and 6.
Although there has been an increase in the number of randomized trials published in JAPMA, there is substantial opportunity for improvement in the methodological quality of trials published in the journal. Researchers seeking to publish reports of randomized trials should seek to meet current best-practice standards in the conduct and reporting of their trials.
Intraosseous lipomas are rare benign bone neoplasms with an incidence of less than 0.1%; origin in the calcaneus has been reported in only a few patients. First-line treatment remains conservative, but several surgical techniques have also been described. We describe a 44-year-old woman with increasing pain in her left heel for a year and a half, who noticed swelling on the lateral side of the calcaneus. The patient underwent radiography, magnetic resonance imaging, and computed tomography of her left foot, which was suspicious for an intraosseous lipoma with a threatening calcaneal fracture. We performed a surgical procedure, curettage of the tumor, spongioplastics (by autologous bone transplant and ?-tricalcium phosphate), and internal stabilization with a calcaneal plate considering the goal of immediate postoperative weightbearing. Histologic examination confirmed an intraosseous lipoma of the calcaneus. The patient's pain was relieved immediately after surgery. Internal stabilization of the calcaneus allowed the patient to immediately fully weightbear and to return to usual daily activities. Although a benign bone tumor, intraosseous lipoma can cause many complications, such as persistent pain, decreased function, or even pathologic fracture as a result of calcaneal bone weakening. Choosing an appropriate treatment is still controversial. Conservative treatment is the first option, but for patients with severe problems and threatening fracture, surgery is necessary. Internal fixation for stabilization enables immediate postoperative weightbearing and shortens recovery time.
A 30-year-old man working as a waiter presented with a progressively enlarging and symptomatic soft-tissue mass on the plantar medial aspect of his left foot. The mass was painful and disrupting ambulation, despite footwear modifications. He ultimately underwent excision of what was a determined to be a fibrolipoma, returning to his regular shoes and all activities. Plantar neoplasms, even when benign, can grow to sizes that can result in significant disability. If left untreated, particularly in individuals engaged in occupations requiring frequent standing or walking, excision of the mass will often require a more aggressive operative approach.
Two cases of tarsal tunnel syndrome in two young men with surgical and radiologic details are reported. The role of varicosities as a cause of tarsal tunnel syndrome and the significance of Tinel3s sign are discussed through a large review of the literature. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 99(2): 144–147, 2009)
There are few documented reports of arteriovenous malformations in the extremities, and even fewer specifically in the foot. Most of the documented cases in the foot present surgical treatments, and there is limited information on the nonsurgical approach. A brief review of the surgical approach to arteriovenous malformations in the foot and hand is presented first, followed by a case report of the nonsurgical treatment of an arteriovenous malformation in the foot, which was initially diagnosed incorrectly.
We sought to develop a standardized protocol for ultrasound (US) measurements of plantar fascia (PF) width and cross-sectional area (CSA), which may serve as additional outcome variables during US examinations of both healthy asymptomatic PF and in plantar fasciopathy and determine its interrater and intrarater reliability.
Ten healthy individuals (20 feet) were enrolled. Participants were assessed twice by two raters each to determine intrarater and interrater reliability. For each foot, three transverse scans of the central bundle of the PF were taken at its insertion at the medial calcaneal tubercle, identified in real time on the plantar surface of the foot, using a fine wire technique. Reliability was determined using intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC), standard errors of measurement (SEM), and limits of agreement (LOA) expressed as percentages of the mean. Reliability of PF width and CSA measurements was determined using PF width and CSA measurements from one sonogram measured once and the mean of three measurements from three sonograms each measured once.
Ultrasound measurements of PF width and CSA showed a mean of 18.6 ± 2.0 mm and 69.20 ± 13.6 mm2 respectively. Intra-reliability within both raters showed an ICC > 0.84 for width and ICC > 0.92 for CSA as well as a SEM% and LOA% < 10% for both width and CSA. Inter-rater reliability showed an ICC of 0.82 for width and 0.87 for CSA as well as a SEM% and LOA% < 10% for width and a SEM% < 10% and LOA% < 20% for CSA. Relative and absolute reliability within and between raters were higher when using the mean of three sonographs compared to one sonograph.
Using this novel technique, PF CSA and width may be determined reliably using measurements from one sonogram or the mean of three sonograms. Measurement of PF CSA and width in addition to already established thickness and echogenicity measurements provides additional information on structural properties of the PF for clinicians and researchers in healthy and pathologic PF.