Footprint analysis and prevalence of flatfoot: a study among the children of South 24 Parganas, West Bengal, India

Open access

Abstract

The present study envisages the morphological differences in anthropometric measurements on footprints among the preschool children and analyzes its manifestation in the different weight category. This study also focuses on the diagnosis of flatfoot among the studied population. Data has been collected from 160 participants (80 boys and 80 girls) from Bengali Hindu caste population aged 3 to 6 years. Anthropometric measurements included height, weight and body mass index. Other measurements on foot morphology included foot length, foot breadth diagonal, foot breadth horizontal, ball of the foot length, outside ball of the boot length, heel breadth, and toe lengths T1, T2, T3.T4, T5. Staheli’s Plantar Arch Index, Chippaux-Smirak Index and foot angle were calculated. Various statistical tests like t-test, Pearson’s correlation and ANOVA were performed. Among all the variables, foot breadth horizontal showed statistically significant difference between boys and girls (p<0.05). All the footprint dimensions showed a significant (p<0.05) positive correlation with height and weight in both the boys and the girls. However, the Staheli’s Plantar Arch Index showed a significant (p<0.05) negative correlation with height and weight and Chippaux-Smirak Index showed a significant (p<0.05) negative correlation with height only among both the boys and the girls. Significant differences (ANOVA) were found between the foot morphology of children in three different weight categories (underweight, healthy and overweight) except the foot angle, and both indices. The present study evinces that weight affects the foot structure of the children. The prevalence of flatfoot was found to be 57.5% among the children with no significant difference (p<0.05) between the boys and the girls. The results thus provide a podium for intricate studies in the future. Timely prognosis of flatfoot in children can instigate early rectification of flat-footedness.

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