Repeatability of the Oxford Foot Model in children with foot deformity.
McCahill J., Stebbins J., Koning B., Harlaar J., Theologis T.
INTRODUCTION: The Oxford Foot Model (OFM) is a multi-segment, kinematic model developed to assess foot motion. It has previously been assessed for repeatability in healthy populations. To determine the OFM's reliability for detecting foot deformity, it is important to know repeatability in pathological conditions. The aim of the study was to assess the repeatability of the OFM in children with foot deformity. METHODS: Intra-tester repeatability was assessed for 45 children (15 typically developing, 15 hemiplegic, 15 clubfoot). Inter-tester repeatability was assessed in the clubfoot population. The mean absolute differences between testers (clubfoot) and sessions (clubfoot and hemiplegic) were calculated for each of 15 clinically relevant, kinematic variables and compared to typically developing children. RESULTS: Children with clubfoot showed a mean difference between visits of 2.9° and a mean difference between raters of 3.6° Mean absolute differences were within one degree for the intra and inter-rater reliability in 12/15 variables. Hindfoot rotation, forefoot/tibia abduction and forefoot supination were the most variable between testers. Overall the clubfoot data were less variable than the typically developing population. Children with hemiplegia demonstrated slightly higher differences between sessions (mean 4.1°), with the most reliable data in the sagittal plane, and largest differences in the transverse plane. CONCLUSIONS: The OFM was designed to measure different types of foot deformity. The results of this study show that it provides repeatable results in children with foot deformity. To be distinguished from measurement artifact, changes in foot kinematics as a result of intervention or natural progression over time must be greater than the repeatability reported here.