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Dr. Ray McClanahan's solution for what ails & cures the foot: spread the toes!

Discussion in 'Biomechanics, Sports and Foot orthoses' started by Dieter Fellner, Jun 28, 2016.

  1. Dieter Fellner

    Dieter Fellner Well-Known Member

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    A little while ago, while trawling the internet for inspiration on how best to manage bunions, I came across Dr. Ray McClanahan's YouTube videos and website. Always eager to entertain new ideas, I watched his video and discovered the cause of much of what ails the foot is misaligned toes.

    Dr. McClanahan's explanation and rationale, in his video, made me feel a little grumpy and I left a few comments:


    To be fair, Dr. McLanahan did not push his ideas and services on The Arena, unlike others before him. Perhaps I am too cynical? In the interest of a fair & balanced perspective, I ask, if perhaps, his idea and method holds some merit. Is it possible that we collectively, as a profession have all missed such a simple and effective solution as a toe spreader? Should we advice our patients to seek straight and stronger toes?

    Perhaps there has been such a debate on, The Arena, perhaps not. Either way, I am interested to know how the global community feels about this.

  2. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    1. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence (there is none)
    2. The same intervention for so many different conditions --> red flag
    3. Support is mostly via anecdote and testimonials --> red flag

    It may or may not be a usefull intervention but this is not how you go about marketing a product unless you want to be labeled as a snake oil salesman.

    The product certainly has lot of fan boys and girls --> which is also a red flag!

    Attached Files:

  3. Dieter Fellner

    Dieter Fellner Well-Known Member


    Thanks for the input, that was my initial reaction also. My first impulse, to his video, was that $65 for toe spreaders seems a little greedy.

    About the marketing. That does seem somewhat entrenched in the American culture. And the public expects it too. I see here, the fluorescent red neon signs for "Dr. Toothy" (no joke). And bold proclamations from the "Bunion King of New York" (also no joke). TV commercials crammed with medical salesmanship and bravado. It is, to an extent, a part of the culture. The English sense of quiet and dignified professionalism and decorum will likely sink the boat in the competitive, financially turbo-charged world of the American style health care provider and their consumer. Medicine & Surgery is as much a business as it is health-care.

    Addendum: it seems the Podiatrist here (and other related professions) feel the marketing pressure much more acutely than our MD counterpart. I saw elsewhere a debate about adopting the "Doctor" title in the UK. Knock yourself out, I say. Unless it's attached to a bona fide medical degree it's only word play. In the US you earn the title based on your academic credits. Make no mistake, it has to be worked for. And in many ways fought for, by way of over-compensation (my impression) as if to prove a point. But it's still not a medical degree which remains the gold standard.

    So, I want to set aside the cheesy and gaudy aspect of the marketing but focus instead on the question: does the concept make sense. I didn't much care for Dr. Ray's theoretical model, but perhaps there can be a well thought out version?
  4. JohnD

    JohnD Member

  5. I really think that Dr. McClanahan's website and marketing claims should be sent to the FTC here in the States. His claims are as bogus as the claims from Vibram FiveFingers...and they got sued for millions$!
  6. Dieter Fellner

    Dieter Fellner Well-Known Member

    I am reminded that I should have trained as a US lawyer. Three years of school, instead of 4 years (tag on three years of residency torture) ....

    oh well, we sleep in the bed we make
  7. Dieter Fellner

    Dieter Fellner Well-Known Member

    Lovely article, thank you. The findings are in contrast with that of the Framingham study which concludes that shoes are not an important factor. Be that as it may I especially enjoyed this comment:

    "Even if genotype is the most important causal factor, in practice it is irrelevant, as it is impossible to modify one's inheritance but easy to improve footwear."

    I wonder if Dr. Shine ever did try to wrestle those Jimmy Choo from a woman ... if so, he's a man more brave than I.

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