O&P practitioners who have traditionally relied on rehabilitation specialists or orthopedists for referrals need to focus more on primary care physicians and gerontologists as the plus-65 population grows, says Chris Robinson, director of orthotics education at Chicago's Northwestern University. Studies have explored the benefits of ankle-foot and other orthoses in treating a variety of age-related conditions, including balance problems, osteoarthritis in the knee, plantar heel pain and foot injuries.

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