Use of an orthotic device in the treatment of posterior heel pain

B. Wooten, T. L. Uhl, J. Chandler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Posterior heel pain (PHP) presents a difficult clinical challenge. The causes of PHP include Haglund syndrome (pump bump deformity), Achilles tendinitis, and Sever's disease (retrocalcaneal bursitis, traction apophysitis). The purposes of this study were to 1) describe a new orthotic device used in the treatment of PHP and 2) evaluate the effectiveness of this device. The orthotic device consisted of a neoprene sleeve holding a 1/4 inch PPT foam rubber horseshoe (Sports Supports, Inc., Dallas, TX). The horseshoe was placed directly over the injury to protect and relieve pressure or was inverted and used as a counterforce brace to reduce the tensile stress to the Achilles tendon. Eight patients (6 children, 2 adults) were evaluated at the time of application and after 1 month of use. Three criteria were considered: 1)subjective pain scale, 2) active goniometric measurements, and 3) toe raise test. The statistical analysis indicated a significant improvement in pain during activity from initial to follow-up and in pain after activity from initial to follow-up. All patients demonstrated improved strength and flexibility. It was concluded that this device may be an effective adjunct to the treatment of PHP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)410-413
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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