Prescription foot orthoses(orthotics) are devices worn under the feet inside your shoes. Orthotics are used to improve the function of your feet and legs by supporting, aligning and providing redistributive effects to the sole of the feet. Orthotics can be designed to have a corrective function, an accommodative function or a combination of the two depending on the complaint they are prescribed for.
A wide range of materials are available from Ganley Orthotics to fabricate orthotics. There are many possible combinations of materials that can not all be covered in this page. Brief summaries of materials are contained here, but please contact us if you have any specific questions about the features and suitability of materials for your patients.
Standard grade polypropylene is available in Black or White and comes in 3mm and 4.5mm thicknesses. Polypropylene is easily moulded and holds its formed shape well but has excellent impact resistance and is still flexible under the foot.
Simona® natural polypropylene:
High grade polypropylene for orthopaedic applications this material has higher strength than standard grade polypropylene. It is excellent for heavier patients or where rigidity is required. Available in an opaque colour in 3, 4 and 5mm thicknesses
Imported from North Sea Plastics this high grade co-polymer is available in these colours: Red, Dark Blue, Green, Yellow, Flesh, Purple Great for children’s orthotics. Available in 3mm thickness
Superform® (Carbon composite)
We currently use Superform® as a lightweight shell material when strength and rigidity is required for an athlete or where a thin orthotic is required. Talk to us about the suitability of Superform® for your patients and which thickness to use.
Low density polyethylene(LDPE)
This plastic looks similar to a clear polypropylene but it is flexible and easy to thermoform. It is best used as a shell material and then reinforced with EVA or Multicork. Excellent results have been achieved with arthritic foot conditions where this material offers enough flexibility when there is limitation of motion in the foot. It can be used in orthotics for diabetic feet, sports applications and children.
Ethylene vinyl acetate(EVA)
A range of EVA foam densities are used to make different components in orthotics. Low density EVAs (up to 150kg/m3) are soft feeling and used primarily for cushioning and redistributive uses in pads and forefoot extensions. Mid density EVAs (150 - 290kg/m3) are used for firmer arch padding or as a durable cover material. These densities can be used for a shell material in EVA orthotics accommodation is the primary objective. Reinforcement of a LDPE shell in this density allows flexibility and good shock absorption. High density EVAs (300 – 400kg/m3) are used for heel posts and for reinforcement of shells where more rigid control is needed. EVA orthoses made from these densities are durable and very supportive offering excellent control of motion and are well tolerated.
High densty polyethylene foam is light weight and easily thermoformed. With use it conforms to high load areas or prominences under the foot. PE foam can be used as a reinforcement to LDPE or as a base to an accommodative insole. It is widely used in making prefabricated orthotics and generic orthotics such as Trithotics®