F. Brandão2, R. Van Houten1, A. Freire1, D. Rabelo2, S. Oliveira2, M. Mastahinich2, R. Zambelli3, T. Souza2, R. Zambelli2

1Department of Health Sciences, Central Washington University, Ellensburg, WA, United States

2Department of Physical Therapy, Universidade Dederal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil

3Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Rede Mater Dei de Saúde, Belo Horizonte, Brazil

Plantar fasciopathy (PF) is a condition most common in athletes, characterized by pain and tenderness of the calcaneal region. In non-athlete cases, higher body mass index (BMI) has been observed as a potential risk factor for developing the condition due to increased mechanical load on the plantar fascia. PURPOSE:The aims of this study are to investigate if BMI influences the performance of clinical tests and clinical presentation of individuals with PF, and to determine whether BMI and clinical tests predicts the clinical course of PF over a 3-month follow-up period. METHODS: 52 individuals with PF were grouped according to the median BMI, into low and high BMI. Participants showed a mean age of 49.4 ± 12.0 years, and a mean BMI was 28.1 ± 4.5 kg/m2. At initial assessment, assessors evaluated eligibility criteria and demographic and anthropometric data were collected, including sex, age, education level, height, and weight for the calculation of BMI. Pain intensity and function were measured at baseline and at the 3-month follow-up via Ankle dorsiflexion Range of Motion (ROM), Navicular Drop Test, Heel Rise Test, and Step-Down Test. RESULTS: The majority of participants were women (n=43, 82.7%), with half of them having completed at least a bachelor's degree (n=26, 50%), followed by a third of the sample with, at least, a high school diploma (n=20, 38%), and a few participants with completed/incomplete elementary education (n=6, 12%). We found that the low BMI group showed better function (Mean Difference (MD) = 11.8; 95%CI: 1.9; 2.16) and lower pain intensity (MD = -1.5; 95%CI: -2.6; -0.3) than the high BMI group. In the multivariable regression model, higher BMI predicted lower function (Beta coefficient = -1.20; 95%CI: -2.3 to -0.3). CONCLUSION: Individuals with PF with higher BMI reported higher pain and lower function compared to those with lower BMI. Although BMI was found to influence PF clinical presentation, it was considered a poor prognostic factor for function in individuals with PF.

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