cavus foot treatment

High Foot Arch (Per Cavus)

Having a high foot arches or pes cavus foot essentially means you are a person with high foot arches. Instead of placing pressure on the entire foot, standing or walking places pressure on the ball and heel of the feet. This can cause instability and pain.

An estimated 15 percent of the population has high-arched feet. The condition can be found on either one or both feet. 

What are the Causes of Cavus Foot

Although some people may be born with high foot arches, others will eventually develop them. Cavus foot can also be caused by neurological conditions, such as Charcot Marie-Tooth disease and muscular dystrophy. Any condition that affects the back or lower limbs can lead to spasticity and cause cavus foot, including spina bifida or even a stroke. 

The additional pressure of having high arches can make a person more susceptible to various symptoms and conditions. People may have associated dysfunctions such as metatarsalgia, plantar fasciitis, or hammertoes.

Signs of High-Arched Feet

A physical examination by an experienced podiatrist or foot doctor can often diagnose pes cavus foot. Our podiatrist will examine the foot both while you are sitting and standing to see how your arch settles in different positions and during movement. 

high arch pes cavus

If you have high arches, you may also notice the following other symptoms, such as: 

  • Calluses along the sides, the ball and the heel of your foot.
  • Hammertoes are gnarled and swollen toes that look like claws due to excessive pressure.
  • Increased pain when you try to stand or walk.
  • Foot tilting inward predisposes you to ankle sprains and strains.
  • Foot drop refers to weakness of the ankle or foot muscles and causes the foot to drag behind you as you take a step. This is usually a sign of a neurological problem.

Diagnostics of a Cavus Foot

Because treatment of high foot arches depends on the root cause, it is crucial to accurately diagnose the condition by visiting a podiatrist. If you have high arches and other symptoms, our team at The Foot Practice will conduct a biomechanical gait assessment to see if other underlying issues are causing the condition.

Our podiatrist will review your family history and examine your feet to assess the severity of any foot problems. Our team will also examine the whole leg to check for abnormalities and inspect your shoes to see how worn they are. If the issue is neurological, we may recommend further evaluation by a neurologist.

If you were born with a cavus foot, it won’t likely change over time, and treatment may or may not be necessary.

Cavus Foot Treatment

When treating high arches, conservative intervention is often the best podiatric remedy. Some reactive muscle strengthening, as well as ankle bracing, may also help to relieve pain.

Orthotic insoles can be prescribed if you’re experiencing extreme foot pain. Orthotic therapy is often prescribed for pes planus (flat feet), a more flexible disorder that can be corrected with custom insoles. With high foot arches, however, orthotic insoles aim to adjust the foot to accommodate its shape and distribute body weight more evenly. Because cavus feet are rigid, they cannot bend or absorb impact when you walk. Therefore, our podiatrist will likely recommend orthotics made from softer materials to absorb the force during movement.

Tight calf muscles or weak peroneal muscles often cause high foot arches. Due to the way, the foot is rolled inward, and the high arch, chronic ankle sprains are more often likely. Ankle and lower leg muscle strengthening and stretching exercises may be prescribed to relieve the painful condition.

Although these therapies can’t change the foot’s shape or function, as surgical intervention may be required, conservative treatment options will likely help with pain management and improve the foot’s function.

In some cases, your condition may continue despite conservative treatments. In these instances, surgical intervention may be required, and an orthopaedic surgeon can be recommended. Make an appointment for a consultation and assessment to determine the best treatment options for your specific condition.

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Podiatry Clinic Location

The Foot Practice Podiatry Clinic
545 Orchard Rd
#16-13 Far East Shopping Centre
Singapore 238882

Podiatry Appointment Business Hours
Monday to Fridays: 9:00am to 6:00pm
Saturday: 9:00am to 1:00pm
Sunday: Closed

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+65 8776 9918