Scientific Articles   |    
Plantar Pressures in Patients with and without Lateral Foot Pain After Lateral Column Lengthening
Scott Jacob Ellis, MD1; Joseph C. Yu, BS1; A. Holly Johnson, MD2; Andrew Elliott, MD1; Martin O'Malley, MD1; Jonathan Deland, MD1
1 Department of Foot and Ankle Surgery, The Hospital for Special Surgery, 535 East 70th Street, New York, NY 10021. E-mail address for S.J. Ellis: elliss@hss.edu
2 Pro Sports, 330 Mount Auburn Street, Suite 505, Cambridge, MA 02138
View Disclosures and Other Information
Disclosure: The authors did not receive any outside funding or grants in support of their research for or preparation of this work. Neither they nor a member of their immediate families received payments or other benefits or a commitment or agreement to provide such benefits from a commercial entity.

A commentary by Saul G. Trevino, MD, is available at www.jbjs.org/commentary and as supplemental material to the online version of this article.
Investigation performed at The Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, NY

Copyright ©2010 American Society for Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc.
J Bone Joint Surg Am, 2010 Jan 01;92(1):81-91. doi: 10.2106/JBJS.H.01057
5 Recommendations (Recommend) | 3 Comments | Saved by 3 Users Save Case



Lateral column lengthening, a commonly used adjuvant for the reconstruction of adult flatfoot deformity, can lead to postoperative complaints of lateral plantar pain or discomfort. We hypothesized that patients with such symptoms would have increased lateral plantar pressures when compared with matched controls without these symptoms.


Ten subjects who had undergone lateral column lengthening and were experiencing pain or discomfort in the plantar-lateral aspect of the foot were selected. Controls who had undergone lateral column lengthening but who were not experiencing such symptoms were matched for age, sex, accessory reconstructive procedures, and time from surgery. At the time of the present study, the patients had been followed for at least two years after the reconstruction and had had removal of hardware. Radiographs of each foot were assessed before and after surgery. The patients completed the Short Form-36 (SF-36) and Foot and Ankle Outcome Score surveys, and standing plantar pressure measurements were obtained. Average mean pressure, peak pressure, and maximum force were assessed at twelve anatomic regions and the two groups were compared.


There were no significant preoperative differences between the two groups in terms of radiographic parameters. Patients with pain had significantly lower SF-36 Physical Health Summary scores (p < 0.05), SF-36 Physical Function Subscale scores (p < 0.05), and average Foot and Ankle Outcome Scores (p < 0.05). Patients with pain had significantly higher lateral midfoot average mean pressure (p < 0.05), peak pressure (p < 0.05), and maximum force (p < 0.05). No differences were found in the hindfoot or forefoot regions.


Patients who have undergone lateral column lengthening and who experience lateral plantar pain have increased plantar pressure values in the lateral aspect of the midfoot. The increased pressures in this area cannot be accounted for solely by radiographic or demographic factors.

Level of Evidence: 

Therapeutic Level III. See Instructions to Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

Figures in this Article
    Sign In to Your Personal ProfileSign In To Access Full Content
    Not a Subscriber?
    Get online access for 30 days for $35
    New to JBJS?
    Sign up for a full subscription to both the print and online editions
    Register for a FREE limited account to get full access to all CME activities, to comment on public articles, or to sign up for alerts.
    Register for a FREE limited account to get full access to all CME activities
    Have a subscription to the print edition?
    Current subscribers to The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery in either the print or quarterly DVD formats receive free online access to JBJS.org.
    Forgot your password?
    Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a reminder to the email address on record.

    Forgot your username or need assistance? Please contact customer service at subs@jbjs.org. If your access is provided
    by your institution, please contact you librarian or administrator for username and password information. Institutional
    administrators, to reset your institution's master username or password, please contact subs@jbjs.org


    Accreditation Statement
    These activities have been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
    CME Activities Associated with This Article
    Submit a Comment
    Please read the other comments before you post yours. Contributors must reveal any conflict of interest.
    Comments are moderated and will appear on the site at the discretion of JBJS editorial staff.

    * = Required Field
    (if multiple authors, separate names by comma)
    Example: John Doe

    Related Content
    The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery
    JBJS Case Connector
    Topic Collections
    Related Audio and Videos
    PubMed Articles
    Clinical Trials
    Readers of This Also Read...
    JBJS Jobs
    DC - Children's National Medical Center
    CT - Orthopaedic Foundation
    VA - OrthoVirginia
    IL - The University of Chicago's Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitation Medicine