Effect of Heeled Shoes on Joint Symptoms and Knee Osteoarthritis in Older Adults: A 5-Year Follow-Up Study.
Perry TA., Dando C., Spector TD., Hart DJ., Bowen C., Arden N.
OBJECTIVE: Our aims were to examine the effects of heeled shoes on incident knee osteoarthritis (OA) and joint pain. METHODS: We used longitudinal data from the Chingford 1000 Women Study (Chingford Study), a prospective cohort of women aged 50 years or older. Participants with musculoskeletal disorders and/or a history of knee-related injury/surgery were excluded. Participants were followed for up to 5 years for incident outcomes including 1) radiographic knee OA (RKOA) and 2) joint pain (feet, knees, hips, and back). Footwear data, including ever worn heels of 2 inches or more and daytime/evening hours (per week) spent wearing heeled shoes over five decades (ages <20 years, 20-30 years, 30-40 years, and >50 years), were available at Year 10 whereas knee radiographs and joint symptom data were also collected at Year 15. Cumulative time spent wearing heeled shoes was calculated for women reporting ever-use of heeled shoes (≥2 inches). Multiple logistic regression was used to examine the relationship between exposures and outcomes (from Year 10 to Year 15). RESULTS: A total of 356 women were eligible at Year 10 with a median (interquartile range) age of 60 (56-65) years. Compared with non-use, ever-use of heeled shoes (≥2 inches) was not associated with incident RKOA (1.35; 95% confidence interval: 0.56-3.27). No associations were observed between increasing cumulative time spent wearing heels and incident outcomes. CONCLUSION: Compared with the non-use of heeled shoes, ever-use of heels (≥2 inches) was not associated with incident RKOA and incident joint symptoms. Further, increasing cumulative time spent wearing heels was not associated with any of our outcomes.