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Pedorthic Care Glossary

Accredited facility – a facility that has completed a certification of competency or credibility by a recognized accreditation board, such as The American Board for Certification in Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics (ABC). Since 1948, ABC has been accrediting orthotic, prosthetic, pedorthic and mastectomy facilities. ABC accredited facilities must comply with a specific set of requirements and adhere to stringent patient care standards.

Achilles tendon the tendonous extension of three muscles in the lower leg: gastrocnemius, soleus, and plantaris. In humans, the tendon passes behind the ankle. It is the thickest and strongest tendon in the body.

Achilles tendonitis inflammation of the Achilles tendon.

Bunion a thickening of the fist metatarsal joint of the great toe. This is usually associated with enlargement and lateral displacement of the toe. Heredity, degenerative bone or joint diseases such as arthritis may cause bunions; however ill fitting shoes are the primary cause of this condition.

Custom multi-density inserts a device that is custom molded for a specific patient's foot.

Diabetic shoes/therapeutic shoes specially designed shoes or inserts intended to reduce the risk of skin breakdown in diabetics with co-existing foot disease.

Durable Medical Equipment – assistive devices such as crutches, wheel chairs, canes, etc. that help a patient with their rehabilitative needs.

Gastrocnemius the calf muscle that runs from just above the knee to the heel and is involved in standing, walking, running and jumping.

Hammer toes an excessive hyperextension of one or more toes, often called claw toes.

Metatarsalgia a condition characterized by pain emanating from the metatarsal heads (the balls of the feet) that increases with weight bearing and pressure. Higher heel shoes that place the majority of ones weight on the forefoot and metatarsals often worsen this condition.

Non-custom multi-density inserts a device that is not made for a single patient but made in large quantity and many different sizes.

Non-therapeutic devices devices that do not address a medical condition, such as off-the-shelf inserts, non-therapeutic shoes, and over-the-counter foot care products.

Orthoses devices which support or correct the function of a limb or the torso.

Pedorthic devices refers to therapeutic shoes, shoe modifications made for therapeutic purposes, below the ankle partial foot prostheses, foot orthoses and subtalar-control foot orthoses (SCFO).

Plantar Fasciitis – a condition that causes inflammation of the fibrous connective tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot from the heel to the ball of the foot. This commonly occurs in athletes and is caused by a strain or over stretching of this connective tissue. This causes pain, inflammation and often a bone spur at the attachment site on the heel.

Prefabricated orthosis – a device manufactured in quantity without a specific patient in mind. The device requires some assembly, fitting or adjustment or other modification to fit a specific patient.

Rehabilitation process of restoring a person who has been debilitated by a disease or injury to a functional life.

Rehabilitation team – a group of allied healthcare professionals that frequently include a physician, surgeon, orthotist/prosthetist, physical and occupational therapist, social worker and counselor who serve the needs of a patient.

Subtalar-control foot orthoses (SCFO) orthoses designed to manage the function of the anatomy by primarily controlling the range of motion of the subtalar joint.

Subtalar joint – a joint in the rear portion of the foot.


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