Why Did They X-Ray Customers’ Feet In The Mid-20th Century When Trying On Shoes

Why Did They X-Ray Customers’ Feet In The Mid-20th Century When Trying On Shoes


Everybody loves the joy of wearing supportive and very well fitting shoes! Your feet look fantastic no matter how much time you wear them; you do not even care about corns or blood flow, ankles or skin infections. Still sometimes, finding the ideal pair is really very complex.




A particularly unique setup was used in the past century to expedite the choice of footwear for customers-a fluoroscope or pedoscope. Fluoroscope was allowed footwear sellers to see the bones and muscles of their customers by putting their feet between an X-ray tube and a fluorescent screen. This is a fairly large box in which customers put their feet to X-ray.



The salesman and the buyer were able to see the exact position of the feet in the footwear, whether space existed or the feet squeezed. Most frequently, children's shoes were selected from it.

Fluoroscope or pedoscope had been built to look like furniture rather than medical equipment. One on display at the International Museum of Surgical Science in Chicago has delicate cut-outs in its wooden cabinet that give it the feel of an ornamental box.



Such systems were first introduced in the 1930s in footwear shops. They have been commonly used in the United States , Canada, Great Britain , Germany and a few other nations. Approximately 15,000 fluoroscopes were made.




Radiation risk factors were identified — in 1904, Clarence Madison Dally, the assistant to Thomas Edison 's analysis of formerly x-rays, died from exposure. After all, when negative impacts of radiation were identified on human beings, they began to overshadow the use of fluoroscope.



That was — especially dangerous to human health of the store employees who interacted with it every day long and kids who may be more sensitive to radiation. In 1970 fluoroscopes were officially banned.

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