Foot health and quality of life among university students: cross-sectional study

ABSTRACT BACKGROUND: Foot problems are believed to reduce quality of life and are increasingly present. Even among young adults of university age, untreated foot problems can lead to postural and mobility problems. Accordingly, our aim here was to determine the relationship between foot health and quality of life and general health among male and female university students. DESIGN AND SETTING: Observational cross-sectional quantitative study conducted at the Podiatric Medicine and Surgery Clinic of the University of Coruña, Ferrol, Spain. METHODS: A sample of 112 participants of median age 22 years came to a health center, where self-reported data were registered, including professional activity, and scores obtained through the Foot Health Status Questionnaire (FHSQ) were compared. RESULTS: In Section One of the FHSQ, the university students recorded lower scores of 66.66 in the footwear domain and 60 in the general foot health domain and higher scores of 84.37 in the foot pain domain and 93.75 in the foot function domain. In Section Two, they obtained lower scores of 60 in the overall health domain and 62.50 in the vigor domain and higher scores of 100 in the physical activity and 87.50 in the social capacity domain. Differences between males and females were evaluated using the Wilcoxon rank-sum test, which showing statistical significance (P < 0.05) regarding the dimensions of footwear and general foot health. CONCLUSIONS: These university students’ quality of life relating to foot health was poor. This appears to be associated with the university period, regardless of gender.

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