Pain severity: when custom insoles make sense
And when something more may be required
Patients come into our podiatry practice in Brookline, MA all the time with a litany of aches and pains. Of all the people who seek Dr. Santopietro’s expertise, about half of them walk out without custom orthotics. And that is perfectly OK with us. In fact, we often tell our patients NOT to buy our custom orthotics!
That’s not to say we don’t treat them. Our recommendation usually is: “You need something to help modify the way your foot interacts with the ground, maybe just a heel lift or a new pair of sneakers…but you don’t necessarily need a pair of custom orthotics…you can resolve this with a good over the counter insole.” Until recently we didn’t have a really good over the counter insole to recommend. So we developed the EvenKeel Performance Insole.
Many problems can be resolved with our custom insoles such as minor plantar fasciitis, moderate heel pain, shin splints, low back pain and many more. There are however instances when we believe more intense, prescriptive solutions may be necessary. Here are the indications we look for when we would tell a patient, “this problem is too severe for an over the counter product:”
Pain is ACUTE and CONSISTENT over a period of time (two weeks at least)
Swelling of a joint or other part of the foot or body is observable, red and sensitive to the touch
Patients are unable to stay on their feet for extended periods in ways they have previously
And more rarely we will advise a patient (or their parents) to purchase a pair of custom orthotics when to the severity of the foot type has the potential to become a debilitating condition in the future.
No matter how severe their problems, all of our patients are advised about the options, and we discuss the pros and cons of each.
And for everything else less severe than the list above we now proudly recommend an EvenKeel Performance Insole, which can help with their mild to moderate problems and will save them hundreds of dollars.
Until next time: Stay on an EvenKeel,
David & Frank Santopietro