3-D scan reveals what high heels do to your feet
A new 3-D scanner developed in England reveals how the structure of the foot changes in high heels. (ostill / shutterstock.com)
Published Tuesday, August 27, 2013 5:01PM EDT
Addicted to high heels? British researchers have created a new 3-D scan of the female foot in a high-heel shoe, to see exactly what's going on -- and it's not too good.
Specialists at Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital in North London are using new technology to view the foot and ankle in three dimensions. They hope the new technology, dubbed the PedCAT 3-D scanner, will transform how foot and ankle problems from wearing high heels can be treated.
"The new scanner allows us to clearly see how the foot and ankle looks and functions inside shoes fully weight bearing," Andy Goldberg, a consultant orthopedic surgeon at the hospital, said in a news release.
To capture the image, patients can stand in the scanner wearing their shoes or barefoot while hundreds of 2-D X-rays are taken of their feet. Then the images are combined to create a 3-D image in just under a minute.
The specialists say that while there is an established link between high heels and foot pain, this is the first time the effect of shoes on feet can be seen in real time. Using the scanner on women wearing their high heels, specialists could see that the shoe forced the foot into an unnatural position, which could lead to pain and long-term damage.
Can't give up your Manolo Blahniks? You don't have to, Goldberg adds. Just wear them in moderation. According to the release, Spice Girl Emma Bunton recently encouraged her Heart FM listeners to carry a pair of flats with them when wearing high heels.
Watch the scanner in action: