Study launched to determine effectiveness of prefabricated foot orthoses in rheumatoid arthritis

U.K. researchers have been awarded a grant of £200,000, or approximately $317,713, by the Dr. William M. Scholl Podiatric Research and Development Fund to investigate the effectiveness of prefabricated foot orthoses for the treatment of problems associated with rheumatoid arthritis.

Led by Kellie Gibson, PhD, lecturer of Professional Health Sciences at the University of East London, in collaboration with researchers from Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU), the study aims to provide the U.K.’s National Health Service (NHS) with robust evidence on clinical outcomes, patient satisfaction and cost effectiveness, according to a GCU press release.

The randomized, controlled study of prefabricated vs. customized foot orthoses for people with rheumatoid arthritis will compare the clinical and cost effectiveness of prefabricated foot orthoses to that of customized versions by evaluating foot pain and disability outcomes. Gibson and colleagues also will use interviews and questionnaires to explore patient opinions, perceptions and experiences of orthotic therapy.

“This research should provide clinically-relevant evidence, enhancing the knowledge base and treatment pathways for the use of foot [orthoses] within the NHS,” Gibson said in the release. “This research is based on early rheumatoid arthritis patients, as they a have a high prevalence of foot disease and pain.”


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