Document Type : Technical Note


PhD, Rehabilitation Research Center, Department of Orthotics & Prosthetics, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Passive and hybrid passive Ankle foot orthoses (AFOs) are the prevalent prescription in drop foot patients to prevent toe dragging during the swing phase. While, these AFOs have some limitations like inability to overcome foot slap, limitation in forward propulsion and inappropriate power generate at the push off. The aim of this study was to design a novel spring damper and evaluate the immediate effects of this AFO on improving the ankle kinetic and kinematic in drop foot patients. This AFO was generated from carbon composite frame and foot section with posterior hinge and spring damper actuator that controlled plantar flexion resistance at the early stance, freely dorsi flexion movement with the ability to store energy during mid-stance movement as well as restore this energy at the pre swing phase. This AFO was assessed on ten drop foot patients who used Posterior Leaf Spring AFO conditions and walked at their self-comfortable walking speed. Then the ankle kinetic and kinematic data in two conditions of with PLS AFO, and novel spring damper AFO were assessed. Results showed a significant improve in the immediate effect of the kinetic and kinematic parameters. In conclusion, spring damper AFO improved all ankle angles in entire gait cycle as well as the ankle moments and power. Therefore, this AFO should be consider as a selective AFO in drop foot patients.