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A Polio Survivor's Life-Altering Journey with Tru-Mold ShoesIn the world of custom orthopedic shoes, every patient’s story is unique and inspiring. Today, we share a heartwarming experience from a middle-aged man with post-poliomyelitis who received a life-changing pair of custom orthopedic shoes.

A Challenging Orthopedic Condition: Plantarflexed Equinovarus and Supination

When the patient first met his care team, he was wearing a pair of poorly fitted boots made by someone inexperienced in catering to orthopedic needs. Upon initial assessment, Hana, his compassionate and skilled practitioner, discovered the complexity of the patient’s condition. One foot was fixed in the plantarflexed equinovarus position, a condition where the foot is pointed downward and turned inward leaving the patient to walk on his tippy toes, while the other foot was in a supinated state, causing it to roll outwards. The patient’s mobility was severely restricted, and he relied on crutches for support.

Tailored Treatment for Orthopedic Support

Recognizing the need for the best possible solution, Hana and Kelly, his Certified Prosthetist Orthotist Assistant (CPOA), collaborated with Tru-Mold Shoes, a renowned custom orthopedic shoe manufacturer known for its expertise and craftsmanship. Hana and the team at Tru-Mold Shoes immediately began crafting a detailed treatment plan with the goal of providing targeted support and alignment for each foot. The result was a pair of custom orthopedic shoes with two different types of buttresses—one inside the shoe and another outside. The inside buttress was strategically placed to support the foot fixed in the plantarflexed equinovarus position, gently guiding it towards a more neutral alignment. On the outside, the second buttress was designed to counter the supination in the other foot, promoting stability and improved gait.

Polio Survivor Embraces Newfound Freedom Thanks to Custom Orthopedic Footwear

When the day finally arrived for the patient to try on his custom Tru-Mold Shoes, emotions ran high in the room. At first, the patient was NOT excited because he did not know what to expect and was doubtful of the function. Hana and Kelly watched with anticipation as the patient took his first steps in the new shoes. He walked while holding the parallel bars for about two steps and then let go of the bars, later even dropping his arm crutch and walking down the hallway several times. As he walked confidently, with improved stability and balance, everyone in the room felt overwhelmed with joy. His cadence increased because he was so excited about the result of the devices. The patient’s hips were more level, and his feet and ankles were supported in a more neutral position. He started praying and thanking the provider as he began telling the story about him and his girlfriend of almost a year. Prior to these shoes, he couldn’t take her on a dinner date because he did not have suitable devices to feel safe to ambulate, which also created low self-esteem in his words. These boots helped this patient ambulate safely and result in a better mental health and social well-being.

This heartwarming case is a testament to the transformative power of custom orthopedic shoes. At Tru-Mold Shoes, we take immense pride in collaborating with practitioners to craft solutions that go beyond footwear—they are life-altering devices that enable patients to rediscover the joy of movement and regain their independence.

Christi Thompson

Author Christi Thompson

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