Lower limb biomechanical characteristics of patients with neuropathic diabetic foot ulcers: the diabetes foot ulcer study protocol

Fernando, Malindu Eranga, Crowther, Robert George, Cunningham, Margaret, Lazzarini, Peter Anthony, Sangla, Kunwarjit Singh, and Golledge, Jonathan (2015) Lower limb biomechanical characteristics of patients with neuropathic diabetic foot ulcers: the diabetes foot ulcer study protocol. BMC Endocrine Disorders, 15 (59). pp. 1-11.

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Abstract

Background: Foot ulceration is the main precursor to lower limb amputation in patients with type 2 diabetes worldwide. Biomechanical factors have been implicated in the development of foot ulceration; however the association of these factors to ulcer healing remains less clear. It may be hypothesised that abnormalities in temporal spatial parameters (stride to stride measurements), kinematics (joint movements), kinetics (forces on the lower limb) and plantar pressures (pressure placed on the foot during walking) contribute to foot ulcer healing. The primary aim of this study is to establish the biomechanical characteristics (temporal spatial parameters, kinematics, kinetics and plantar pressures) of patients with plantar neuropathic foot ulcers compared to controls without a history of foot ulcers. The secondary aim is to assess the same biomechanical characteristics in patients with foot ulcers and controls over-time to assess whether these characteristics remain the same or change throughout ulcer healing.

Methods/Design: The design is a case-control study nested in a six-month longitudinal study. Cases will be participants with active plantar neuropathic foot ulcers (DFU group). Controls will consist of patients with type 2 diabetes (DMC group) and healthy participants (HC group) with no history of foot ulceration. Standardised gait and plantar pressure protocols will be used to collect biomechanical data at baseline, three and six months. Descriptive variables and primary and secondary outcome variables will be compared between the three groups at baseline and follow-up.

Discussion: It is anticipated that the findings from this longitudinal study will provide important information regarding the biomechanical characteristic of type 2 diabetes patients with neuropathic foot ulcers. We hypothesise that people with foot ulcers will demonstrate a significantly compromised gait pattern (reduced temporal spatial parameters, kinematics and kinetics) at base line and then throughout the follow-up period compared to controls. The study may provide evidence for the design of gait-retraining, neuro-muscular conditioning and other approaches to off-load the limbs of those with foot ulcers in order to reduce the mechanical loading on the foot during gait and promote ulcer healing.

Item ID: 42036
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1472-6823
Keywords: diabetic neuropathies, diabetic foot, foot ulcer, longitudinal studies, gait, protocols, plantar pressure
Additional Information:

© 2015 Fernando et al. Open Access. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

Funders: Queensland Department of Health, James Cook University (JCU), National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC)
Projects and Grants: JCU Graduate Research School , NHMRC Practitioner Fellowship 1019921
Research Data: http://dx.doi.org/10.4225/28/575E4ADA2FFF0
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2015 14:27
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1102 Cardiovascular Medicine and Haematology > 110201 Cardiology (incl Cardiovascular Diseases) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920103 Cardiovascular System and Diseases @ 100%
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