Most patients have an arch on the inside of the foot but the height of this varies considerably and is a variant of normal. Absence of the arch is referred to as ‘flatfeet’.
Usually there is no cause for flatfeet; it’s just the way you are made! Rarely painful flatfeet are caused by problems with the bones or muscles / tendons.
Not usually. Most flatfeet are a variant of normal and do not need treatment. Painful flatfeet or excessive shoe wear often benefit from an arch support orthotic.
Maybe! Flatfeet often run in families so you children may have flatfeet. Your children do not require orthotics unless they have pain or excessive shoe wear.
You should consider seeing your GP or Podiatrist if
Most flatfeet can be helped by an arch support orthotic inserted into your shoe. Surgery for flatfeet depends on the cause of your flatfoot. Rarely flatfeet are cause by two bones in your foot being joined together (tarsal coalition). Surgery can remove the excess bone allowing mobility of the foot. Another cause of flatfoot is tendon rupture (tibialis posterior). Depending on the severity of the rupture, surgery can restore function with tendon transfers or fusion surgery if arthritis has developed.