Intended for healthcare professionals


Prevention of falls through podiatry care

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 16 June 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d3052
  1. Wesley Vernon, head of podiatry service and research lead, Sheffield Community Services
  1. 1Podiatry Service, Jordanthorpe Health Centre, Sheffield S8 8DJ, UK
  1. wesley.vernon{at}

Consider foot pain, footwear, and orthoses

Jose Oto/SPL

In the linked randomised controlled trial (doi:10.1136/bmj.d3411), Spink and colleagues report a parallel group randomised controlled trial with 12 months of follow-up in 305 older people. The trial assessed the effectiveness of a multifaceted podiatry intervention for preventing falls.1 The intervention included the use of foot orthoses, footwear advice supported by a voucher scheme, a foot and ankle exercise programme, falls prevention education, and routine podiatry care. The intervention significantly reduced the incidence of falls compared with routine care (incidence rate ratio 0.64, 95% confidence interval 0.45 to 0.91). No significant differences were seen between the groups in the proportion of fallers or multiple fallers.

Because the intervention reduced the incidence of falls in people with foot pain and should be inexpensive and simple to implement, the authors concluded that the programme could be used in routine podiatry practice …

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