Measurement of functional heel pad behaviour in-shoe during gait using orthotic embedded ultrasonography

Scott Telfer, James Woodburn, Deborah Turner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


The ability to measure the functional behaviour of the plantar heel pad is clinically relevant in dystrophic or pathological heel conditions and may help to inform the design and development of interventions that attempt to restore normal function. In this study we present a novel technique which utilises orthotic heel inserts with an embedded ultrasound (US) transducer to allow the functional, dynamic behaviour of the heel pad to be measured in-shoe during gait. The aim of this study was to demonstrate feasibility of the technique, determine the reproducibility of measurements, and to compare the effects of two orthotic inserts: (i) a flat orthotic heel raise and (ii) a contoured heel cup insert on the behaviour of the heel pad during gait. Dynamic compression of the heel pads of 16 healthy participants was recorded during treadmill walking and combined with plantar pressure measurements to allow stiffness and energy disappation ratio (EDR) to be estimated. Inter-session reliability of the US measurements was found to be excellent (ICC2,1=0.94-0.95), as was inter-rater reliability (ICC2,1=0.89). Use of the heel cup insert significantly reduced the maximum compression of the heel pad (p
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328–332
Number of pages5
JournalGait and Posture
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014


  • Foot
  • Heel
  • Orthotic shoe inserts
  • Ultrasonography


Dive into the research topics of 'Measurement of functional heel pad behaviour in-shoe during gait using orthotic embedded ultrasonography'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this