Orthotics is a specialist medical discipline that focuses on the prescription, design and fitting of orthoses. The definition of orthosis is “an externally applied device used to influence the structural and functional characteristics of the neuromuscular and skeletal system” (ISO September 2020).
Orthotics are braces or splints which are designed to help patients with a variety of different medical conditions to better manage day-to-day living and reduce pain. You may be familiar with foot orthotics or custom-made insoles, but orthotics can also cover different areas of the body. These orthotics are simply named after the joints of the body that they are treating, thus a device that covers the foot and ankle is called an Ankle Foot Orthosis (AFO) and one that also includes the knee is called a Knee Ankle Foot Orthosis (KAFO).
LOC specialises in providing bespoke orthotics for its adult and paediatric patients, this means that they are custom made for each individual. And this is very important as ill-fitting orthotics will cause more problems than they will solve. We spend a lot of time ensuring our patients are comfortable in their orthotics, after all, they will be wearing them almost all the time.
See our bespoke orthotics page for the full range of orthotics LOC offers. Alternatively, continue below for an overview of our orthotic treatment.
LOC has unrivalled experience in treating children who present with complex and sometimes rare conditions.
Our bespoke orthotics are designed to enhance function and mobility while reducing pain.
Children develop their motor patterns and gait characteristics from an early age and it is vital to aid that development with correctly prescribed and well-designed orthotics.
Since 2005 LOC has built up a considerable reputation in the field of adult rehabilitation.
We have considerable expertise and experience in treating many different types of adult neurological and orthopaedic conditions.
It is important for our clinicians to understand your goals and expectations so we take time at the original assessment to discuss these in detail.
We have pioneered OSKAR, which stands for Optimal Segmental Kinematic Alignment approach to Rehabilitation.
It is an approach to Rehabilitation within a specialised clinic that treats children with lower limb neurological conditions such as cerebral palsy & spina bifida.
It was developed by world-renowned physiotherapist Elaine Owen, who was awarded an MBE in 2012 for her services to children with disability.
Cerebral Palsy is the term used to describe a group of conditions that affect the movement of muscles and the posture of the body.
Hypermobility is the term used to describe the ability to move joints beyond the normal range of movement.
Pes Planovalgus (flat feet) is the loss of the medial longitudinal arch of the foot.
Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR): LOC has developed a reputation in the SDR community for its treatment and management of patients who have undergone this ground-breaking surgery.
Sever's Disease is a condition that affects adolescents during their growth spurt in puberty. It is a painful inflammation of the growth plate in the heel bone.
Spina Bifida is a birth defect of the neural tube, which is what eventually develops to form the spine and nervous system.
Transverse Myelitis is a rare neurological disorder, with around 300 new cases of the disease recorded in the UK every year.
LOC is committed to providing its patients with the most up-to-date orthoses available; we are always assessing new and innovative products like carbon fibre & neuro swing technology for our bespoke orthotics, braces and foot orthotics.
The Neuro Swing AFO has a unilateral ankle joint that is designed to be held within a carbon fibre construction. The joint has two springs, posterior and anterior. The springs can be altered in three ways. Resistance in the springs can be reduced or increased and range of movement can be altered as can the alignment of the ankle. The Neuro Swing system from Fior & Gentz enables us to return the patient’s gait pattern to one that is as near normal as possible.
LOC has considerable experience in treating a wide variety of sports injuries, whether caused by overuse of a specific body part or a traumatic incident. LOC’s bespoke orthotics aid the rehabilitation process and can treat individuals that have developed a specific condition by restoring normal movement and biomechanical function. LOC has its own video vector gait laboratory.
Victor the Robot, our new Computer Numerical Control milling machine, in action! Victor is noisy, but he’s transforming our ability to design and manufacture orthotic devices at our Kingston-upon-Thames clinic.
Manufactured by Rodin4D, Victor is capable of milling complex ergonomic shapes, meaning that we can now potentially assess a spinal orthotic patient, manufacture the orthosis and have it fitted, all in the space of a day. Victor can do everything we need to do for our patients, in-house and in the shortest time possible with no compromise on quality.
Working with LOC and Elaine has been a great experience – they really take the time to look at your child and understand their individual challenges and needs. For parents who are in the same position that we were, I would say do your research – see what clinics are available near you and what the costs are, but my feeling is it’s worth every penny.
After 10 years of daily physiotherapy and swimming, not to mention SDR, hamstring and tendon lengthening, we have finally achieved independent walking – it was a mother’s day gift that would take some beating.
LOC’s video vector technology measures exactly where Austin’s weight is being distributed, how his hips are moving and how his legs are moving. It’s those insights that have made his new AFOs so effective. Even within a few days, LOC’s splints have had more impact on his independence of movement than anything else we have done.
Since his new orthoses, his change has been remarkable. He is more mobile and can walk independently. Jason is now walking indoors and outdoors and is unrestricted. He is now properly enjoying the summer sunshine for the first time in a few years with no complaints of pain.
It has been a breath of fresh air – LOC’s ability to accommodate Sophie’s circumstances and manufacture her orthotics so quickly has taken a huge amount of potential stress away. Alan talks to Sophie as well - she looks forward to seeing him. He has even been able to fulfil her request to have her SMOs decorated with unicorns! It makes her feel special and much happier about wearing them.
I can now go a mile without having to stop, so it is a lot better and I’m walking in a regular pattern now. The orthotic fits perfectly because LOC took proper mouldings and photographs; they were very thorough.
Amelia was always looking for something to hold on to, now she runs around. Sam really puts in that extra effort to make the clients happy. I’d recommend LOC because they have all the equipment and extremely professional staff who have been trained by world-renowned physiotherapist Elaine Owen.
Lilac just flits about now. Every day she's getting stronger and our expectation now. We are absolutely with The London Orthotics Consultancy for the long haul now. We’ve found a business that can provide what we need and who we trust, and it’s the trust that's the most important thing to us.
My left knee hyperextends and Sam felt he could improve that condition with a different design of brace and also improve my gait with some other adjustments. The brace was such a success that I used it solely after receiving it. I am most thankful to Sam and his colleagues for their dedication to my case and their prompt assistance, which changed a potential disaster into a great tourist visit.
Multidisciplinary teams in business will sit down together and discuss a project with all parties concerned, each adding their particular expertise and insight. This is what it is like at London Orthotic Consultancy (LOC) but on a more personal level: Teamwork is evident. The camaraderie and mutual respect are undeniable. The attention to the smallest achievement is uplifting.
A gait anaylsis and a new bespoke carbon fibre knee ankle foot orthosis (KAFO) help Caroline walk in comfort again, following years of living with neurological dystonia and meralgia paraesthetica. She describes her new orthosis as “life-changing”.
Matilde travelled from Chile to LOC for bracing treatment for her adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. Now, nearly a year and a half since she started wearing her brace, she has achieved near-total correction of the curvature of her spine. This is her scoliosis bracing story.
After only 6 months of wearing bespoke pectus braces from The London Orthotic Consultancy, Will started to notice a visible difference in his pectus carinatum.
After trying out several scoliosis braces in Romania, Ukraine and Turkey, Iulia begins treatment with the LOC Scoliosis Brace and is already seeing results in a matter of months. Here her mum, Raluca, describes how and why they came to LOC for her treatment.
Through bracing treatment with the dynamic chest compressor, Jack has achieved 90% correction in his pectus carinatum after only two months. Here, mum describes Jack's non-surgical treatment journey.
Baby Iyad's plagiocephaly was classed as 'severe' yet was treated in just 3 months of wearing the LOCband Lite helmet.
Baby Tal's mother explains why she insisted on getting the Cunningham Brace to treat her son’s club foot
A mother of one of our patients shares her perspective on what it's like being a parent to a child with spina bifida.