British Leprosy Relief Association
Changes in plantar load distribution and gait pattern following foot drop correction in leprosy affected patients
aPremananda Memorial Leprosy Hospital, 259/A, Acharya Prafulla Chandra Road, Manicktala, Kolkata, West Bengal, 700006, India
Correspondence to: Mrinmoy Karmakar, Senior Occupational Therapist, Premananda Memorial Leprosy Hospital, 259/A, Acharya Prafulla Chandra Road, Manicktala, Kolkata, West Bengal, 700006, India (e-mail: email@example.com)
This study was done to compare the changes in plantar load (weight distribution) and gait patterns before and after tibialis posterior transfer surgery in people affected by leprosy. Changes in gait patterns were observed and proportionate changes in plantar load were quantified using data captured by a baropodometer. All the eight patients who underwent tibialis posterior transfer surgery in 2013 in our hospital were included in the study. In addition to the regular pre-operative and post-operative assessments, the patients also underwent baropodometric evaluation. There was a significant change in plantar load at the heel, lateral border and forefoot. Using the foot pressure scan, it was noted that the progression of the centre of mass (displayed graphically as ‘the gait line’) was also affected by the altered pattern of weight distribution. This study reiterates the importance of tibialis posterior transfer because: it restores the normal gait pattern of 1, 2, 3 (where 1 is heel strike, 2 is mid foot contact and 3 is forefoot contact) and provides a more uniform distribution of planter load.