Foot Pain, Plantar Pressures, and Falls in Older People: A Prospective Study
Version of Record online: 9 SEP 2010
© 2010, Copyright the Authors. Journal compilation © 2010, The American Geriatrics Society
Journal of the American Geriatrics Society
Volume 58, Issue 10, pages 1936–1940, October 2010
How to Cite
Mickle, K. J., Munro, B. J., Lord, S. R., Menz, H. B. and Steele, J. R. (2010), Foot Pain, Plantar Pressures, and Falls in Older People: A Prospective Study. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 58: 1936–1940. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-5415.2010.03061.x
- Issue online: 7 OCT 2010
- Version of Record online: 9 SEP 2010
- foot pain;
- dynamic plantar pressure;
- older adults
OBJECTIVES: To determine whether foot pain and plantar pressure are associated with falls in community-dwelling older adults.
DESIGN: Community-based cohort study with 12-month prospective falls follow-up.
SETTING: Sydney and Illawarra statistical regions of New South Wales, Australia.
PARTICIPANTS: Randomly recruited, community-dwelling adults (158 men and 154 women) aged 60 and older.
MEASUREMENTS: Manchester Foot Pain and Disability Index to establish baseline foot pain and dynamic plantar pressures. Participants were then classified as fallers (n=107) or nonfallers (n=196) based on their falls incidence over the following 12 months.
RESULTS: Fallers had a significantly higher prevalence of foot pain than nonfallers (57.9% vs 42.1%; chi-square=4.0; P=.04). Fallers also generated a significantly higher peak pressure and pressure-time integral under the foot than non-fallers. In addition, individuals with foot pain had a significantly higher peak pressure and pressure-time integral under the foot than those without foot pain.
CONCLUSION: High plantar pressures generated during gait may contribute to foot pain and risk of falls. Providing interventions to older people with foot pain and high plantar pressures may play a role in reducing their falls risk.