Plantar pressure measurement is a technique that is becoming increasingly employed in clinical practice. It can be helpful to evaluate for such things as how much pressure there may be underneath the feet, that could be essential to figure out in people that have diabetes mellitus who are in danger of a foot ulcer. Plantar pressures are also helpful to help figure out how people walk and how stress shifts throughout the gait cycle. This is often useful information that will help podiatrists order and design foot orthotics. This is such an important topic that an episode of the livestream, PodChatLive ended up being about this. PodChatlive is a Facebook live which has two hosts along with a different guest on every show where they explore issues of meaning to podiatry as well as related issues. It's also published to YouTube and as an audio podcast.
In that show, they talked plantar pressures and pressure mapping together with Dr Bruce Williams DPM from Indiana, USA. He is a Fellow and former President of the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine and who owns Breakthrough Podiatry in NorthWest Indiana and has considerable experience on plantar pressure measurements, pressure mapping in addition to their interpretation and clinical application. He uses both the in-shoe system and pressure mat devices within his clinic and has been doing so for nearly two decades now. He is well published on this issue in peer reviewed academic publications, so is in a position to discuss this issue. In the edition of PodChatLive they reviewed what the centre of pressure can be and how it can be used clinically to understand what is going on. They also discussed how pressure data affects his clinical decision making, mainly foot orthotic recommending. They talked about the advantages and disadvantages of in-shoe as opposed to the mat technologies and try to offer some advice to those who might be thinking about introducing this kind of service to their practice.