Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Dr. Scholl’s Orthotics: Smoke and Mirrors

Dr. Scholl’s Orthotics: Smoke and Mirrors

Have you been to Walmart and seen the kiosk for Dr. Scholl’s “revolutionary foot mapping technology” that promises “custom fit orthotics?” On the TV commercial you see “doctors” behind the machine like in the Wizard of Oz!

In reality, the “foot mapping technology” is a simple pressure pad. One steps on it and is told where they have high pressure areas and then it suggests a “custom fit orthotic”. First of all, a pressure pad can only tell you where there is more pressure when you are standing still. It knows nothing about what neutral position is, which is the ideal functioning position of the foot. This is the position your foot is captured in when a REAL custom orthotic is made. There is nothing “custom fit” about their process. A custom fit would require not only dispensing an orthotic made directly from a mold or 3D impression of both feet, but also a biomechanical exam including gait analysis. This is what allows a patient to wear an orthotic that is made specifically for their foot type AND gait pattern.

Yes, some people can find relief from and over-the-counter arch support. Claiming to provide custom orthotics without the biomechanical exam and gait analysis is nothing more than smoke and mirrors. Don’t believe everything you see on TV!

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