Clinical scenario: Chronic ankle instability (CAI) is a condition commonly experienced by physically active individuals. It has been suggested that foot orthotics may increase a CAI patient's postural control.
Clinical question: For patients with CAI, is there evidence to suggest that an orthotic intervention will help improve postural control?
Summary of key findings: The literature was searched for studies of level 2 evidence or higher that investigated the effects of foot orthotics on postural control in patients with CAI. The search of the literature produced 5 possible studies for inclusion; 2 studies met the inclusion criteria and were included. One randomized controlled trial and 1 outcomes study were included. Foot orthotics appear to be effective at improving postural control in patients with CAI.
Clinical bottom line: There is moderate evidence to support the use of foot orthotics in the treatment of CAI to help improve postural control.
Strength of recommendation: There is grade B evidence that foot orthotics help improve postural control in people with CAI. The Centre of Evidence Based Medicine recommends a grade of B for level 2 evidence with consistent findings.