Sunday, May 29, 2011

NICE Guidelines for diabetics

Diabetes is now one of the biggest health problems in the UK. In 2009, it was estimated that there were 2.3 million people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.With rising numbers of people affected by the condition, the incidence of complications is also on the rise. These include foot problems such as ulcerations and gangrene, foot deformities, and infections which, if left untreated, can have a significant impact on a patient's quality of life. When a person is less mobile this may lead to loss of employment, depression, and damage to, or loss of, limbs. Each year in the UK, around 5,000 people with diabetes undergo leg, foot or toe amputations, equivalent to 100 a week. Treating diabetic foot problems also has a considerable financial impact on the NHS through outpatient costs, increased bed occupancy, and longer hospital stays. Up to 20% (£600m) of the £3bn the NHS spends on diabetes each year goes on treating diabetic foot problems, and at least £252m of this is spent on amputation. Currently there are some variation in the management of patients with diabetic foot problems. This variation is due to a range of factors, including differences in the organisation of care between patients' admission to an acute care setting and discharge. This variability depends on geography, individual trusts, individual specialties (such as whether the service is managed by vascular surgery, general surgery, orthopaedics, diabetologists or general physicians) and the availability of podiatrists with expertise in diabetic foot disease.

The NICE guideline comprises a clear, authoritative source of information for NHS hospitals which will help overall management of diabetic foot problems, aiming to reduce variations in practice. It includes the following key recommendations:

Each hospital should have a care pathway for diabetic foot problems in diabetic patients who require hospital care.

A multidisciplinary foot care team should manage the care pathway
of patients with diabetic foot problems who require inpatient care. The multidisciplinary foot care team should normally include a diabetologist, a surgeon with the relevant expertise in managing diabetic foot problems, a diabetes nurse specialist, a podiatrist and a tissue viability nurse.

At the initial examination and assessment, the patients' feet should be examined for evidence of: Inflammation/infection, Ulceration, Deformity
Neuropathy, Ischaemia, and Charcot arthropathy.

Refer patients with diabetic foot problems to the multidisciplinary foot care team within 24 hours of the initial examination of the patient's feet. Transfer the responsibility of care to a consultant member of the multidisciplinary foot care team if a diabetic foot problem is the dominant clinical factor for inpatient care.

When in hospital, patients with diabetic foot problems should have access to appropriate pressure reducing surfaces, to minimise the risk of pressure ulcer development on the affected limb.

New NICE guidelines aim to reduce variations in the level of care that patients receive when they are in hospital, in the expectation these lead to fewer amputations, and a better quality of life for those affected and lower NHS costs.

Shoe Revolt: In the land of the free slavery still exists!

In the Land of the Free: Slavery Still Exist! from Shoe Revolt on Vimeo.

A short history of clogs

Shoe of the Month Podcast: Shoe Stories - Podcast 7: Lancashire Clogs

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Shoe survey: Girls just want to have comfort?

According to the Consumer Reports survey, the average woman owns 17 pairs but only regularly wears three pairs. A recent Consumer Reports’ survey found 60 percent of women are willing to tolerate painful shoes for fashion's sake. Subjects were asked to try out three pairs of pumps that look alike but come with very different price tags. The labels were covered so the women could not tell the less expensive shoes from the expensive ones. The women was asked to walk a defined course twice a day for a week in each pair of shoes and filled out a ballot each time. Researchers at Consumer Reports then examined at how well each shoe was made. After cutting them up they discovered theManolos were a better-made shoe and most subjects liked the styling. However in the blind tests more women thought the cheaper non designer shoes were more comfortable.

Smart GPS shoes: Quo Vadis

A World Alzheimer global study recently said nearly 10 million caregivers spend $148 billion a year on the care of Alzheimer patients. Existing technology used to keep track of those with dementia include a pendant or a watch which contain a radio transmitter. Each waterproof device has a different frequency. The person with dementia is found by using a receiver tuned to that frequency. New footwear comes fitted with a GPS and is designed to track in real time people with dementia who go wandering. Brisbane-based Tracking Central has just signed for exclusive rights to the Smart Shoe in Australia and New Zealand. The Smart Shoe technology comes from US group GTX Corp which specialises in personal location devices to track people, pets, vehicles and high value assets. Tracking Central, which has been in business two years, with products including Care Tracker TC- 100 , PawTracker (a device small enough to fit onto a pet's collar or harness), and a live CareTracker Monitoring Service. The shoes are likely to cost around US$200- $300 and are due to be released here later this year.

Monday, May 23, 2011

New Balance: Holding their own

New Balance started in the early 1900s as a manufacturer of arch supports and orthopedic shoes. By the 1970s the company was focusing on athletic shoes. Twenty-five percent of the shoes New Balance sells in the United States are made domestically. They opened the Maine plants in Skowhegan and Norridgewock in 1982; and Norway in 1997. Twenty-five percent of the shoes New Balance sells in the United States are made domestically. New Balance employs more than 4,000 people worldwide. According to the company labor costs at the U.S. plants are more than 13 times higher than overseas, but the domestic plants are more productive. Manufacturing techniques developed by Toyota Motor Corp are used to produce shoes in 70 minutes from start to finish. The US domestic plants manufacture 7 million pairs of shoes yearly, roughly 25 percent of the shoes the company sells in North America. Shoes are put together on an assembly line with 32 stations. Leather is first cut leather into shapes. Next, stitchers sew pieces together before passing them on. Machines wrap the shoes over a last (this sets the size and fit), and workers attached the soles. "Single piece flow" manufacturing also lets New Balance ship shoes on the same day they are made, meaning less wait time for customers, a competitive advantage in North America. According to experts these are the last three manufacturing plants in the United States.
In April, New Balance launched a custom-made shoe program, allowing consumers to design their own shoes online. Buyers can pick from different colours (and mix-and-match colours) and order custom embroideries. New Balance makes and ships the custom shoes immediately so they arrive anywhere in the country in four to eight days. New Balance owns brands including Dunham, PF Flyers, Warrior and Brine. According to SportsOneSource, in 2010 Nike and its subsidiary Jordan had roughly 45 percent market share, Skechers had 6.4 percent and New Balance had 5.8 percent.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Wedge insoles (foot orthoses) fail to help osteoarthritis of the knee

New research has revealed knee osteoarthritis patients who placed wedge insoles in their shoes daily for 1 year had no benefit in pain or function, compared with control patients. These and other data appear to rule out the efficacy of wedge insoles for osteoarthritis (OA). A randomized, controlled trial of 179 osteoarthritis patients was carried out by a team of researchers. The finding means that knee osteoarthritis (OA) treatment recommendations from the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) and from the Osteoarthritis Research Society International (OARSI) need revision. In the Melbourne study, the researchers used full-length wedges and MRI to assess structural outcomes. The study recruited patients (aged 50 years and older) from the community who had knee pain on walking over the medial region with medial osteophytes and joint narrowing, a mechanical axis of 182 degrees or less, and a Kellgren-Lawrence (KL) grade of 2 or 3. The 200 patients who entered the study averaged 64 years old, about 60% were women, their average symptom duration was 7 years, their average body mass index was about 29 kg/m Every day, the randomized patients placed in their shoes either a wedge insole with a 5-degree pitch, or a flat, fully compressible control insole. Treatment ran for 1 year, with the insoles replaced quarterly. Patients in the wedge group reported wearing their insoles for an average of 7 hours daily, whereas the controls used theirs for an average of 9 hours daily. The study's primary outcomes (assessments of pain and cartilage structure) showed no significant differences between the 89 patients who completed 1 year in the wedge group and the 90 control patients who finished 1 year. The two groups also had no significant differences in measures of function. The main difference between the treatment groups was that 47% of wedges users and 23% of controls self-reported problems with the insoles. Reports of foot pain came from 36% of wedge users and 16% of controls. The discomfort was rated as severe by 10% of wedge users and 1% of controls.

Lady Gaga's dildo heels: What took you so long?

Lady Gaga wore giant heels recently on American Idol. Nothing unusual there perhaps but on closer scrutiny the heels were shaped like phalic batons. The $4,500 leather and Lucite platforms were made by British label, Void of Course. The shoes are part of the label’s Impossibility of Love collection.

Gaga and those shoes

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Vivian Westwood Shoes, An Exhibition:1973-2011

The "Vivienne Westwood Shoes, An Exhibition: 1973 – 2011" was launched in London, where it met a huge success. Already seen in Moscow it opens in the Lebanon, at the Linda Sursock Palace in Gemmayzeh, Beirut, before take off to Beijing, Shanghai and Tokyo through 2011, then to New York and Los Angeles in 2012. The exhibition will showcase around 100 shoe designs and trace the exceptional success of Dame Westwood’s career to date. Illustrating her defiance of the rules of wearability and convention, the exhibition is also evidence of her uncompromising quest for superb craftsmanship and attention to detail. Westwood’s designs are a result of considered and distinctive influences - 16th Century Dutch Delft pottery as the inspiration for her 1996 Toile Print Boot, British colonialism reflected in the Sahara Plimsoll of 1999, Victorian dandyism influencing the 1996 Trompe l’Oeil Boot and Westwood’s nurse inspired 15.5 centimetre heel Mary Janes of Erotic Zones a salute to S/M and fetishism. Her shoes have also gained a reputation and created memorable fashion moments - the tumbling of Naomi Campbell when wearing the Super Elevated Gillie on the catwalk in 1993, the Rocking Horse which became an instant collectible when it appeared in 1986 and her Pirate Boots, first seen in 1981 but remain popular and in demand to the present day.

Supporting Vivienne Westwood’s travelling shoe exhibition, DHL is the official exhibition logistics partner for the duration of the world wide tour.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Sketchers Shape Up for Girls: Animated ads cause parental concerns

Parents Protest Skechers Shape-ups for Girls:

Ads for the Skechers Shape-ups for Girls that claim the shoes allegedly help firm the legs and butts of women are causing alarm with parents worried over the message they may send to young girls when it comes to body image. Despite endorsements by celebrities like Kim Kardashian, parents remain unmoved by ads for a glittery pink youth version of the shoes for children. Concerns relate to young children being exposed to commercials that link being thin with being happy. In a cartoon advert slim girls are chased by lethargic boys dressed as hot dogs, cupcakes and ice cream.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Walk a mile in her shoes ®

Walk a mile in her shoes ® is a United Gender Movement, dedicated to ending sexualized violence. It was started in 2001 by Frank Baird and has grown to become a world-wide movement with tens of thousands of men raising millions of dollars for local rape crisis centres, domestic violence shelters and other sexualized violence education, prevention and remediation programs. In 2007, Frank formed Venture Humanity, Inc, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation which develops peace, violence prevention and community projects. The mission of Walk a mile in her shoes ® is to create a unique and powerful public experience that educates individuals and communities about the causes of sexualized violence, provides them with prevention and remediation strategies and empowers them to further develop and implement the skills and knowledge interpersonally and politically. The organisation helps inform the world of the valuable contributions men are making to stop sexualized violence.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

United Nude

Rem D Koolhaas launched  United Nude shoe brand in 2003 as a new synthesis of design and fashion. Spanish performance artist Alicia Framis invited them to create a "shoe suitable for outer space" for her “ Moon Life” project, a multidisciplinary speculation about intergalactic travel and living in space. United Nude formulated their own criteria for their Moon Life Shoe: to create something as light and compact as possible while remaining fashionable. They came up with a flat pack platform heel. The shoe consists of slotted carbon fibre members that join the molded insole and outsole pieces. The shoe takes no more than 10 minutes to assemble and some of the shoe parts arts can be interchanged for customizing.

Santiagos no more

Santiagos were colorful canvas-and-rubber shoes made in Santiago de los Caballeros, Dominican Republic by Keen . The company have stopped making the shoes and a according to a spokesperson for the company this was due to a host of different reasons but mainly because of the inferior quality of the product. Keen started making simple sandals less than a decade ago but are now a company with $200 million a year in sales. The socially responsible Keen has created a vegan shoe and a glue-less shoe box from recycled material. Keen did plan to donate a portion of Santiago sales to their HybridLife Hope Fund, which works with Kiva. Due to the change in production the company will donate $5 to the fund for every pair of Keen footwear sold between May 10 and June 10. The goal is $100,000.

HybridLife Hope from KEEN on Vimeo.

Heart and sole of New Zealand Police

Peter Marshall, NZ Police Commissioner has ordered urgent work to discover the cost of keeping the nation's footsore police officers in shoes. After spending time with frontline staff the commissioner realised feet were of major concern to serving officers. He is keen frontline personnel have appropriate footwear paid for by New Zealand Police. Consequently, he had asked that "urgent work" be carried out to discover the financial implication of providing footwear. Currently NZ police have to buy their own shoes. The footwear dress code is black, working-style shoes.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Lady Gaga: You can leave your shoes at the door

Lady Gaga is a mentor on American Idol, but like Elvis “The Pelvis” Presley and the ban on his hip shaking on the small box, the diva’s shoes will not be shown.

According to a spokesperson for the program Gaga’s footgear was not camera friendly. Apparently she was not wearing “broadcast standard sensitive shoes.” The stand (excuse the terrible pun) taken by the program comes at a time when new heights in platforms, wedges, and stilettos have never been higher. The average heel height of sky high heels is six inches, more than double what it was the 1970s. In the past, chopines were platform shoes worn by affluent women in Italy. The height of the platforms rose until they were 24’ off the ground making it impossible to walk without aid of walking sticks or servants. It is common for the fashionista in the 17th century to be carried in sedan carriages from room to room. Mind you Lady Gaga has not been slow putting her ped egg to good use.

High heels on the View

Cosmetic Foot Surgery

High heel racers

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Gaga pums it up for earthquake charity

Lady Gaga has offered up a pair of size 39 faux crocodile Gucci heels "worn and autographed" as part of a charity auction which began today to raise money for New Zealand earthquake survivors. The diva’s shoes quickly attracted interest, reaching NZ$1,110 (US$881) only hours after being offered on the Rise Up Global Telethon on Other items on offer included two packages to attend a Manchester United game plus a personal meeting with the club manager Sir Alex Ferguson, and a crew jacket from hit US comedy Two and a Half Men. The auction began today and will close on Sunday, May 22.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Shoe Exhibitions

Kitsap County Historical Museum, Bremerton has a new exhibition called “Made for Walkin’,” and documents the life and times of wearers through the past century. On display is an array of footwear varies from Marvin Williams’s massive basketball kicks to spiked, cork boots (Caulk) worn by lumberjacks. The exhibit also includes information on shoe manufacturing, with machines borrowed from cobbler shops.

On display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is “Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty”.

Gum Nut Kid - cool shoes

Style notes: Something for mother?

Style Notes is a new book by Maggie Alderson . The novelist, philosopher of fashion and arbiter of style, brings a new collection of her Style Notes column. Warm, witty and wise, Style Notes is the ultimate insider's guide on the wonders and weirdness of the world of fashion, style and life beyond. Share the frustration of the search for the perfect Walkable Heeled Shoe and find out why we need public foot changing cubicles.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

7 ounce bounce

Despite the awful song these are pretty cool kicks from Crocs.

Crocs Chameleons™

According to BusinessWeek, Crocs Inc., announced their first-quarter net income more than tripled. The figures exceeded expectations of analysts. As the company aims to make their footwear brand more appealing to consumers year-round and around the globe, they expect their second-quarter earnings and revenue to grow. As part of their new order Crocs Inc announced the launch of Crocs Chameleons™ . The shoes are a new colour-changing shoe line designed for children. The new collection combines Crocs’ proprietary closed-cell resin Croslite™ material with photochromic technology for the first colour-changing technology in moulded footwear.
Crocs Chameleons™ shoes change from a translucent base colour to a brilliant bright colour within seconds when exposed to sunlight and back to their original colour just as quickly once removed from UV light.
There are two types:

Crocs Chameleons™ Translucent Clog (MSRP: $39.99, sizes C4 – J1). A fun, color-changing clog-style shoe for boys and girls, the Crocs Chameleons™ Translucent Clog is available in lime/yellow, oyster/pink lemonade and celery/sea blue.

Crocs Chameleons™ Shirley (MSRP: $39.99, sizes C9 – J1). A girly twist on the classic clog with a feminine flower cutout, the Crocs Chameleons™ Shirley is available in oyster/ultraviolet and celery/fuchsia.

The Crocs Chameleons™ shoes will be available online and at Crocs retail locations US . Only a limited quantity of Crocs Chameleons™ shoes will be available to the public but you can from today, sign up to receive a special link to a pre-sale website. Consumers who sign up will be emailed a link they can follow to purchase Crocs Chameleons™ shoes online 24 hours before they go on sale to the public. Additional quantities of Crocs Chameleons™ shoes will be available later in the summer, just in time for the back-to-school shopping season. In 2012 the collection expands, with consumers seeing more evolutions of this new colour-change technology from Crocs.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Vibram FiveFingers for children: Latest trend

The latest fad for kids in the coming season is likely to be Vibram FiveFingers running shoes. Vibram recently launched child-size versions of the popular adult running shoe. Adult FiveFingers come in eight versions from the classic, which has a softer sole, to the most sturdy, called the Bikila. The shoe style has become more popular with the rise in barfoot running and extreme sports. Now rivals Fila have introduced fingerlike shoes for kids called Skeletoes Toe Shoes. Vibram FiveFingers for kids comes in four choices - blue-and-gray and black-and-gray for boys, and pink-and-purple and black-and-pink-and-white for girls. The hope is children wearing barefoot shoes may be encouraged to excerise more.

Shoe designs which include separate compartments for each toes are not new and were first introduced back in the late 15th century with the Duckbill shoe (also known as bear's paw or cow's mouth shoe). The shies had extremeley broad toes (up to 12 inches wide) with individual compartments for each toe. The top of the shoes were made of soft leathers and and decorated with slashes or cut outs. The style ran concurrent with the Cult of the Virgin Mary in England and was worn by the upper classes. The most famouse bella figure to wear duckbills was Henry the Eigth.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Olfactophillia: Stinky feet and smelly shoes

According to Potter (1999) the odour of fetishistic objects adds to their sexual excitement. Aigremont (cited in Rossi, 1990a) believed the podophile associated the smells of feet with the smell of genitals and retifists preferred the smell of shoes. Pheromones are odourless gases produced naturally by the body and are a series of short chain aliphatic acids. They release chemicals into the body which when the aroma is picked up can sexually excite a partner. These enter the nose and cling to a receptor found in the nasal cavity. The organ is known as Jacobson's organ or the vomeronasal organ. The vomeronasal organ does not respond to any other scents. (Monti-Bloch, Jennings-White, Dolberg, & Berliner, 1994). Pheromones are diffused directly into the hypothalamus of the brain and have no detectable odour of their own. Exposure to pheromones appears to have a significant effect on skin temperature, skin conductance, and cortical (brain) activity. Some pheromones elicit an immediate response, while others induce long-term changes in behavioural or endocrine state. Pheromones effect the autonomic nervous system, producing a "relaxation response," opposite to the fight or flight reaction. Some pheromones work better for males, while others work only for females. Many authorities believe humans lost their appreciation for pheromones because we evolved with our primary dependence on vision and not smell. However a social custom in Victorian times was for young women to hold a handkerchief under their armpit whilst dancing. The ladies would favour their partner at the end of the evening by gifting them with their sweat soaked, handkerchief. As reported by Jacob (1999) numerous studies have been carried out suggest axillary odour contains enough chemical differences in the odour profile to allow for discrimination between individuals. The author cites Stern and McClintock (1998) who was able to show that odourless axillary compounds from the armpits of women in the late follicular phase of their menstrual cycles accelerated the preovulatory surge of luteinizing hormone of recipient women and shortened the menstrual cycles. Axillary compounds from the same donors, which were collected later in the menstrual cycle (at ovulation) had the opposite effect: they delayed the luteinizing hormone surge of the recipients and lengthened their menstrual cycle. Studies have also shown women prefer male odours that have Human Leucocyte Antigen types different from their own. This preference was reversed when the same female subjects were asked to repeat their rating whilst taking oral contraceptives. Bromidrophilia describes arousal from body smell. Mysophilia refers to becoming aroused by smelling, chewing or rubbing against foul smelling objects like socks. It is possible mysophiles have increased sensitivity to pheromones produced in body excretions. Osmolagnia, Osphresiolagnia, & Ozolagnia are terms used to describe arousal from strong smells. The role of smell in linking the development of fetishism with pregenital stages has been used by psychoanalysts to offer explanation for the interest in smells that can accompany or play an important part in fetishism (Balint, 1935; Epstien, 1969, Money, 1984).

Balint M 1936 A contribution on fetishism International Journal of Psycho-Anlaysis 16 481-483.
Epstein A W 1975 The fetish object: Phylogenetic considerations Archives of Sexual Behaviour 4 (3) 303 -308.
Jacob TJC 1999 Human Pheromones School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff
Money J 1984 Paraphilias: Phenomenology & classification American Journal of Psychotherapy 38 164-179
Monti-Bloch L, Jennings-White C. Dolberg D.S. and Berliner, D.L. 1994 The human vomeronasal system. Psychoneuroendocrinology 19, 673-686.
Potter B 1999 Old shoes stolen for sniffing
Rossi WA 1990a Foot and shoe fetishism: Part 1 Current Podiatric Medicine 19-23
Stern, K. and McClintock, M.K. (1998) Regulation of ovulation by human pheromones. Nature 390, 177-179

UK women have more shoes unworn that worn

According to recent research by Co-operative Insurance, the average female in the UK owns 20 pairs of shoes. Eleven (11) of those pairs estimated at about 400 pounds will remain unworn in the wardrobe waiting the right occasion that never comes. Despite leaving more than half of their footwear to gather dust, most women will continue to fuel their shoe addiction, splashing out on an additional eight new pairs a year. Nearly a third of the 3,000 woman surveyed admitted buying shoes that were the wrong size, but the shoes had appeal anyway. According to the study, the average spend on a pair of shoes was 36 pounds, and at eight pairs a year that would total 288 pounds.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Surgical podiatrists - Upstart bunion scrappers!

The long distrust between doctors and podiatrists continues and now the peak doctors' organisation is resisting a push to allow non-medically trained podiatric surgeons to operate on feet. The group are challenging the surgical podiatrists’ ability to provide quality care and claiming their very titles may mislead patients. The Australian Medical Association has also accused the medical profession's new national regulator of failing to support doctors by opposing a bid to create new national standards for podiatric surgeons. Claims that podiatric surgeons in Australia were trained to a much lower standard approximated for medical graduates, and hence patients might be disadvantaged. Confusion over the title ‘doctor’ could misled the public into believing a podiatric surgeon was a medically trained doctor. Many patients could have simultaneous medical conditions that podiatrists would be ill-equipped to handle. Perth podiatrist Andrew Schox, president of the Australasian Podiatry Council, said that, contrary to the AMA's claims, podiatric surgeons trained for a similar amount of time to orthopedic surgeons before qualifying, by which time they would have done an average of 3000 foot operations. Mr Schox rejected the claim that patients with other health problems might suffer, saying operations were done in consultation with a patient's GP or specialist. He rejected the AMA's claim patients might be misled by the term "podiatric surgeon", saying "doctor" was a courtesy title used by vets and dentists as well as doctors.

Glamour magazine’s first Stiletto 100m Run

More than 100 women took part in Glamour magazine’s first Stiletto 100m Run for charity. The rules specified the heels had to be at least 7cm high and 1.5cm wide. The terrain was over cobblestones and rough concrete and stone mix but the participants made it without serious incident, it was reported. Among the runners were a few celebrities, including former Miss South Africa Jo-Ann Strauss, current Miss South Africa Bokang Montjane, Top Billing presenter Jeannie D, actress Vanessa Haywood and Expresso presenter Liezel van der Westhuizen. The proceeds go to The Homestead Street Children Projects.