Cross-sectional analysis of foot function, functional ability, and health-related quality of life in older people with disabling foot pain
Article first published online: 27 OCT 2011
Copyright © 2011 by the American College of Rheumatology
Arthritis Care & Research
Volume 63, Issue 11, pages 1592–1598, November 2011
How to Cite
Mickle, K. J., Munro, B. J., Lord, S. R., Menz, H. B. and Steele, J. R. (2011), Cross-sectional analysis of foot function, functional ability, and health-related quality of life in older people with disabling foot pain. Arthritis Care Res, 63: 1592–1598. doi: 10.1002/acr.20578
- Issue published online: 27 OCT 2011
- Article first published online: 27 OCT 2011
- Accepted manuscript online: 31 AUG 2011 06:09AM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 21 JUL 2011
- Manuscript Received: 7 APR 2011
- National Health and Medical Research Council, Australia. Grant Number: 209799
- Australian Podiatry Education and Research Foundation
- National Health and Medical Postdoctoral Fellow (Overseas Clinical Training Fellowship). Grant Number: 1016521
- National Health and Medical Research Council Fellow (Clinical Career Development Award). Grant Number: 433049
To determine whether disabling foot pain is associated with foot function characteristics, functional ability, and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in older adults.
The Manchester Foot Pain and Disability Index was used to establish the presence of foot pain in 312 community-dwelling men and women age >60 years. Ankle dorsiflexion strength and flexibility, foot reaction time, hallux and lesser toe flexor strength, and spatiotemporal gait parameters were measured to characterize foot function. Participants completed postural sway tasks and the Short Form 36 Health Survey (SF-36) as a measure of HRQOL. Participants with disabling foot pain, classified using both the original and conservative (at least 1 item scored as “most/every day”) definitions, were then compared to those without pain, adjusting for sex and body mass index.
Participants with foot pain scored significantly lower on the total SF-36 and all subcomponents. Ankle dorsiflexion strength, hallux strength, stride length, step length, and walking speed were significantly reduced in those with foot pain. After applying a more conservative cutoff for disabling foot pain, reduced toe flexor strength, increased foot reaction time, increased postural sway, increased time in double support, and reduced time in single support emerged as additional characteristics of those with disabling foot pain.
Older people with disabling foot pain exhibit reduced HRQOL, functional impairment, and alterations to foot function that may contribute to an increased risk of falling. Providing interventions to older people to reduce foot pain and improve foot function may play a role in improving mobility and quality of life.