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Novel Shoe Insoles May Be Saving Grace for MS Patients

February 7, 2017

An international team of researchers is looking for patients to test specially designed shoe insoles aimed at improving the mobility of people with multiple sclerosis.

The study, led by UQ School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences physiotherapy lecturer Dr. Anna Hatton, is seeking 176 people affected by MS to take part in a three month trial of the insoles.

"Many people with MS experience problems with walking which can make day-to-day activities difficult and often leads to falls, so improving walking ability is of primary importance in maintaining health, independence, and quality of life," Dr. Hatton said.

"Evidence suggests that wearing textured shoe insoles, which are designed to stimulate receptors on the soles of the feet, may be one possible option to help improve gait.

"We now need people with MS to help us investigate whether the novel insoles influence the way the leg and trunk muscles work while walking on both even and uneven surfaces."

The study will also look for changes in the perception of foot sensation and the awareness of foot position.