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Measuring the Association Between the Biomechanics of Plantar Pressure and Musculoskeletal Changes throughout Pregnancy and Postpartum

Hormonal and anatomical changes during pregnancy tend to disrupt balance, posture and locomotion, and it is possible to reverse these changes in the postpartum period. This study aimed to measuring the association between musculoskeletal changes and plantar pressure during both pregnancy and postpartum period. The study sample comprised 20 pregnant women (24.40 ± 5.43 years) who were evaluated in the first, second, and third trimesters of gestation and in the late postpartum period. Plantar pressure was evaluated using the Footwork Pro platform in a bipedal static position with eyes open for 20 s and musculoskeletal changes were assessed on the basis of plantar pressure and data from pre- and postpartum questionnaires. Post hoc ANOVA, Tukey tests and the chisquare test were used. The results showed that morphological and physiological changes in pregnancy are closely related to musculoskeletal changes and distribution of plantar pressure – with the hindfoot presenting higher plantar pressure values than the forefoot - causing discomfort and pain and compromising posture, stability, and gait during gestation and postpartum, indicating significant changes in plantar pressure (right foot – Δ%=42.74%, p ≤ 0.001; left foot - Δ%=41.35%, p ≤ 0.001) and musculoskeletal up to the third trimester of pregnancy, and a decrease on these changes in the postpartum period (right foot – Δ%=- 5.99%, p ≤ 0.001; left foot - Δ%=18.09%, p ≤ 0.001).


Iraci Soares de Oliveira, César Augusto de Souza Santos, Rogéria Pimentel de Araújo, Ronaldo Gabriel, Estélio Henrique Martin Dantas, Joana Figueira, Helena Figueira

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