By: Dr. Rick Grayson, DPM, CPed
If you struggle with chronic foot and ankle pain, or you have a condition that requires an ankle-foot orthosis (or AFO), finding a foot and ankle bracing solution that works best for your needs and lifestyle is essential.
At Horizon Orthotics & Prosthetics Experience, we are dedicated to helping our patients stabilize their feet and ankles to allow them to get back to the speed of life and be as active as they’d like to be.
Keep reading to hear from one of our experienced physicians, Dr. Rick Grayson, about foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City.
What is an Arizona AFO?
An AFO device (Ankle Foot Orthosis) is used as a non-surgical treatment modality to support an affected lower extremity. With our custom foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City, these AFOs can be over-the-counter or custom made AFOs to treat conditions of the feet, ankles, and up to the knees, in some circumstances.
An Arizona AFO incorporates plastic along with a custom molded leather lacer.
What is an Arizona AFO used for in foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City?
An Arizona AFO is usually prescribed for pain relief, gait abnormalities, post-surgical control of foot reconstructions and orthopedic deformities. Common pathologies treated may include:
- Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction (PTTD)
- Achilles tendon pathologies
- Diabetic Charcot bone and joint disease states
- Cerebral palsy
- Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease
- Diabetic neuropathy
- Certain post-stroke conditions.
Flat Feet and Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction
A very common condition treated with these AFOs and our custom foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City is Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction (PTTD). Prior to this dysfunction, a condition called Posterior Tibial Tendonitis (PTT) usually presents. These can progress into various stages of adult acquired flatfoot.
These conditions, if left untreated, can be progressive in severity. They can lead to surgical reconstruction and/or disability. As a result, if the condition does worsen or is recalcitrant to the conservative treatment, then you must be checked for chronic steroid use, Reiters Syndrome, Ankylosing Spondylitis, and Psoriasis.
What is the process?
First, a prescription is received and a thorough evaluation is performed, our foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City includes:
- A plaster or fiberglass impression of the foot, ankle, and lower leg is made.
- Custom lab fabrication will then fill the cast with plaster to make a mold accurate to your anatomy, and to make sure you have appropriate biomechanical alignment.
- The AFO is then made with molded leather, polypropylene plastic, and foam for padding. The lace up method is the most popular, but Velcro closures can be used. If appropriate, this AFO may be hinged if range of motion is needed at the ankle.
- After the break-in period this orthosis should be comfortable to wear. Sometimes a shoe size up may be necessary for an appropriate fitting. Follow-up appointments may be necessary for any adjustments or modifications to the custom.
What can I expect after foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City?
Very often, staying active and pain-free can be achieved from foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City with an Arizona AFO. Consult with your physician or podiatrist for an appropriate prescription. Furthermore, the earlier you seek treatment for these conditions, the better result you will have.
If you are in need of foot and ankle bracing in Kansas City, contact the experienced team at HOPE. Our doctors will evaluate your condition and provide the best solution for you.