These acrylic measuring devices were initially developed to help our students at TUSPM in Philadelphia with their documentation of lower extremity findings in biomechanics and podiatric orthopedics. As this developmental process continued, it became apparent that there was a need for innovation by way of newer instruments to measure various parameters of foot and leg structure and motion.
The first device was a torsion goniometer, called the TorGon, which was primarily used to measure degrees of hip joint rotation and the degree of existing tibial torsion (malleolar position). It consisted of a clear acrylic frame with holding cups upon which a gravity goniometer was mounted. The SegMometer followed, which was to our knowledge, the first device to measure the dorsiflexion and plantarflexion displacement ranges of the metatarsal segments. Later, this same instrument became useful in the stance evaluation of foot pronation and supination and of the postural attitude of the foot in relaxed stance. The metal forefoot measuring device we were using was not stable on the rearfoot during forefoot assessment and it lacked an accommodation element in the presence of a firm first ray plantarflexion deformity. Thus, our acrylic Forefoot Device was evolved to its present satisfactory state. A Rearfoot Device was more recently added to the line which incorporates a movable pointer and a protractor dial mounted on an elevated hood which serves to free both hands for the calculation of calcaneal inversion and eversion ranges of motion. A new addition to the line of biometry instruments is our Calcaneal Bisector to facilitate accurate construction of the posterior heel bisection reference line. Finally, the Malleolar Torsion Caliper, based on an article by L. Staheli and Engle, greatly improves the evaluation of Tibial Torsion deformity.
Alan K. Whitney D.P.M.
Professor Emeritus, Department of Orthopedics
Temple University School Of Podiatric Medicine