An Investigation of the Relationship between Plantar Weight Distribution and the Condition of Osteoarthritic Knees during Quiet Standing

Brian Joseph Sutterer, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Abstract

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a damaging disease that commonly affects the knee and can impact function of the lower limb. This study examined how plantar weight distribution is related to the changes in knee alignment and various types of joint damage in patients with OA. A force mat was used to measure plantar weight distribution on 37 patients with knee OA, and the internal condition of the knee was evaluated during surgery. Analysis showed a relationship between medial plantar weight distribution and an increase in knee alignment angle (0.20, p < 0.001). For the damage models, an indirect relationship was found between medial weight distribution and ACL damage (-0.14, p=0.029). No relationship was found for the other types of OA damage. It is reasonable to believe they do exist, however. This study found a connection between weight distribution and alignment, and previous research has shown one between alignment and OA.