Objective: To assess the efficacy of a lateral wedge insole with elastic strapping of the subtalar joint for conservative treatment of osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee.
Methods: The efficacy of a novel insole with elastic subtalar strapping and a traditional shoe insert wedge insole was compared. Ninety female outpatients with OA of the knee were treated with wedge insoles for 8 weeks. Randomization was performed according to birth date. Standing radiographs with unilateral insole use were used to analyze the femorotibial and talar tilt angles for each patient with and without their respective insole. Visual analog scale (VAS) score for subjective knee pain at the final assessment was compared with that at baseline in both groups.
Results: Participants wearing the elastically strapped insole (n = 46) had significantly decreased femorotibial angle (p < 0.0001) and talar tilt angle (p = 0.005) and significantly improved VAS pain score (p = 0.045) in comparison with baseline assessments. These significant differences were not found in the group with the inserted insole (n = 44).
Conclusion: The novel strapped insole leads to valgus angulation of the talus, resulting in correction of the femorotibial angle in patients with knee OA with varus deformity, and may have a therapeutic effect similar to that of high tibial osteotomy.