Lower extremity osteoarthritis is a common condition among older adults.
As such this systematic review aimed to investigate the effects of footwear, including shoe inserts, in reducing lower extremity joint pain, and improving gait, mobility, and quality of life in older adults with osteoarthritis.
The results of the review indicated that it is not possible to make a definitive conclusion about the long-term effects of footwear, due to a limited number of randomized controlled trials conducted in this area.
However, the evidence that was found indicated that shock-absorbing insoles, subtalar strapping, and avoidance of high heels and sandals early in life may prevent lower extremity joint pain in older adults.
Wagner, A., & Luna, S. (2018). Effect of footwear on joint pain and function in older adults with lower extremity osteoarthritis. Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy, 41, 85-101. Doi: 10.1519/JPT.0000000000000108