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Pes Cavus (High Arched Foot)

Introduction to Pes Cavus (High Arched Feet)

Most people have a gap between the inner side of the foot and the ground when they are standing. This is referred to as an "arch". Small children do not have an arch, the arch begins to form between the ages of 3 and 10. Feet that have a high arch are sometimes referred to as cavus type feet.

Understanding this condition

  • On standing the person will have a high arch.
  • The heel may be drawn towards the inner side and the toes may be drawn inwards.
  • Some people with pes cavus have clawed toes.
  • The front of the foot may appear to be dropped or drawn downwards. The results in the 1st Ray (1st toe Joint) and the 5th Ray (5th toe joint) to be dropped.
  • The symptoms vary depending on the severity of the condition.
  • The patient may experience corns or hard skin under the sole of the foot, especially under the 1st and 5th toes.
  • Shoes may wear out quickly.
  • Pain or tenderness along the arch.
  • Shoes may be very difficult to fit, especially around the ankle.
  • Stiffness of the feet.
  • With severe pes cavus, problems such as calf pain, knee pain and hip pain may be present.
  • Some patients may suffer from ankle sprains very easily.


High Arch

Causes of High Arch

  • It may be hereditary, i.e. runs in the family.
  • In most cases the exact cause cannot be discovered
  • Cerebral palsy, spina bifida and muscular dystrophy can also lead to a flat foot condition.

Treatment for High Arch

  • Insoles and orthotics can provide relief to sore arches. View here

  • Silicone pads and creams can help to reduce the pain that arises from corns. View here
  • Wear wide fitting shoes.
  • Do not try to treat the secondary lesion (i.e. Corns) yourself.

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"...looking forward to receiving my second pair of Dr Foot Insoles as they have done wonders for my feet. I've been working up to 11-12 hr. a day in a packing factory and have had no pain in my arch area, they feel great!"

Julie S Fall, New York USA