RRS Education Chiropractic BLOG - Musculoskeletal Research Reviews

Although many indirect clinical techniques have been developed to assess foot posture, there is no one technique that can be considered a criterion-standard. Furthermore, studies that have investigated the reliability of techniques for assessing foot posture have reported inconsistent findings.
This study investigated the reliability of the following common measures of foot posture:
  1. Navicular drop (NDP): which is considered to be a valid indicator of radiographic arch height and a predictor of maximum rear foot pronation during walking).
  2. Navicular drift (NDT): which is performed similar to NDP, although it is not commonly used by clinicians and researchers because of its reported poor to moderate reliability.
  3. Static arch index (SAI): which along with the DAI below, is reported to provide valid information on the structure of the medial longitudinal arch and is associated with total rear foot motion. The arch index has been shown to have moderate to excellent reliability.
  4. Dynamic arch index (DAI)
  5. Foot Posture Index-6 (FPI-6): has been tested against radiographic images, Rasch analysis, and static and dynamic kinematic data of the lower extremity and found to be valid to assess foot posture. However, results of studies on its reliability have been equivocal, varying from poor to excellent.
Because the results of studies that have investigated the reliability of these techniques are inconsistent, the purpose of this study was to determine the inter- and intra-rater reliability of NDP, NDT, and FPI-6, and test-retest reliability of SAI and DAI. As a reminder, inter-rater reliability is the degree of agreement among different raters (clinicians, in this case), while intra-rater reliability refers to the degree of agreement among repeated administrations of a diagnostic test by the same rater (clinician).

THIS WEEK'S RESEARCH REVIEW: “Reliability of Different Clinical Techniques for Assessing Foot Posture”
This paper was published in JMPT (2020) and this Review is posted in Recent Reviews, Ankle - Foot, Clinical Testing & Procedures and the 2021 Archive.
Navicular Drop Measurement:
Navicular Drop

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