At Solutions, we treat many patients with severe osteoarthritis of the knees. This is degenerative damage that accumulates in certain parts of the knee joint, eventually causing it to fail. While deterioration can occur in any part of the knee, the most common presentation is degeneration in the medial side of the joint. Damage here contributes to a knock-knee or bow-legged appearance, depending on which other ligaments that have also become damaged.
As part of our initial evaluation, we always include a foot scan to determine the health of the patient’s arches. Surprisingly, we find arch deficiencies on nearly 100% of our patients! We also find a direct correlation between osteoarthritic degeneration of the medial knee joint and a fallen foot arch on that side. Keep reading to learn more about this important connection and why custom orthotics may be the key to success for combatting arthritis of the knees here.
The arch of the foot has much to do with the health of the knee joints. The foot arches act as shock absorbers to diminish the impact of every step we take on the rest of the body. The arches also act as a level foundation for the ankle and knee joints. When the foot arches fall, the foundation under the knee drops and becomes unbalanced, putting more stress on the joints above, particularly at the medial knee joint.
This is why custom orthotics are often an essential element when treating osteoarthritis in the knees. Custom made shoe inserts help restore specific deficiencies patients have in their feet and help re-establish a more balanced foundation. When trying to reduce bone on bone conditions with off-loading knee braces, hyaluronic acid or placental allograft injections, orthotics can also be extremely helpful.
Perhaps the correlation between medial knee degenerative damage and dropped foot arches and how common this combination is suggest we should be taking better care of our feet much sooner in life. Is it possible to avoid this type of wear and tear in the knee joint (or lessen it’s severity) by fixing dropped arches with custom shoe inserts earlier in life? Ensuring your knees have a solid foundation as early as possible seems like a ‘step’ in the right direction! If you’re not wearing custom shoe orthotics, save your knees by contacting us for a free foot scan! 423-542-2913