ORTHOPÄDIE SCHUH TECHNIK and IVO unite their forces in 2021

 On October 22 and 23, 2021, the city of Cologne in Germany will become the worldwide center of pedorthics. For the first time, the trade fair and congress ORTHOPÄDIE SCHUH TECHNIK will take place together with the congress of the International Pedorthic Association (IVO).

The congress of the IVO, which takes place every three years, has been assigned for 2021 to the Zentralverband Orthopädieschuhtechnik (ZVOS), which is the conceptual sponsor of ORTHOPÄDIE SCHUH TECHNIK - International Trade Fair and Congress since 2011. The event is organized by C. Maurer Fachmedien, publishing house of the  journal foot&shoe, who will also be responsible for the organization of the IVO Congress in 2021.

Despite the currently challenging situation, the organizers are in the middle of the preparations for the trade fair and congress. In doing so, they are in close contact with the Köln Messe, the Cologne trade fair company, in whose halls the events will take place. Messe Köln, which operates one of the largest exhibition centers in the world, offers its guests sophisticated hygiene concepts for the trade fairs and congresses, which effectively protect the health of exhibitors and visitors. Thus, concepts will also be available for the IVO Congress and ORTHOPÄDIE SCHUH TECHNIK, which will be adapted to the current infection and risk situation. The organizers are therefore very confident that the fair and the congress will become the international meeting place of the pedorthic community in the coming year.

Diabetic foot and biomechanics of the foot are congress topics

In coordination with the IVO, two main topics were defined for the congress. One is the diabetic foot syndrome, which has become one of the most important areas for pedorthists worldwide. Diabetes mellitus has become a widespread disease not only in industrialized countries. The number of people suffering from diabetes is also increasing in many Asian countries, in the Arab world or in countries in Africa and South America – and with it the number of cases of diabetic foot syndrome.

Much attention is now being paid to diabetes as an underlying disease. The diabetic foot as a secondary disease is often not yet sufficiently in the focus of medicine and health ­policy. It is a disease that can very quickly have serious consequences for patients. A large proportion of amputations on the foot and lower leg are caused by injuries attri­butable to diabetic foot syndrome.

The treatment of diabetic foot syndrome is one of the greatest challenges for pedorthists. On the one hand, patients’ feet are often at high risk, on the other hand, the work of pedorthists is only one part of the therapy. Many professions have to work together on an interdisciplinary basis to protect patients’ feet from injuries and amputations.

At the congress, the latest scientific findings on the diabetic foot will be presented on the one hand, but also the therapy options available today, ranging from new surgical concepts and medical foot care to the provision of diabetes adapted foot beddings, therapeutic shoes and custom orthotic shoes. An important aspect will also be the interdisciplinary cooperation, without which all efforts of the individual professions will be in vain. Various models will be presented on how this cooperation can ­succeed.

The second focal point is devoted to the biomechanics of the foot. The human foot has the same anatomy and biomechanics all over the world. However, the understanding of biomechanics and thus the assessment of the causes of foot problems – and the therapy derived from them – can be very different. For example, some corrective elements for foot orthotics, which are standard in Europe, are not known in other regions of the world and are sometimes even rejected. On the other hand, some approaches from other countries seem foreign to Europeans. The congress will attempt to explain the biomechanics of the foot on a scientific basis and present and discuss the different approaches for therapies. This will not only take place in the lecture hall, but also in interactive workshops in which colleagues from different countries can exchange their concepts and experiences – for example, based on practical patient treatment.

Of course the congress will not be limited to these two topics. As in previous events, speakers from various disciplines are invited to present topics on the therapy of foot problems at the congress. Pedorthists, physicians, scientists and related professions are invited to present their experiences and findings on the treatment of the foot and orthopedic appliances for the foot. 

The lectures in the congress hall will be translated into the IVO languages English, German and French. This means that lectures can also be held in these languages.

In addition, there will be seminars dealing with various topics ranging from practical therapy of foot problems to questions of business management or marketing.  Besides seminars in German, seminars in English will also be offered. For the interactive, international workshops a translation for German and English will be available.

Up-to-date information on the trade fair can be found on the trade fair homepage www.OST-Messe.de.