Identification of potential plantar ulceration among diabetes patients using plantar soft tissue stiffness

Jee Chin Teoh, Taeyong Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study investigates the relationship between plantar tissue stiffness and selected parameters, including age, diabetes mellitus (DM) duration, body mass index (BMI), and HbA1c level. 70 diabetes patients with no foot problems were recruited. The plantar soft tissue at the 2nd sub-metatarsal head (MTH) pad was examined using the novel indentation system developed. The stiffness constant, K, was used to describe the tissue stiffness. The four factors (age, DM duration, BMI, and HbA1c level) were plotted against the plantar tissue stiffness. The scatter plots revealed that a higher plantar tissue stiffness was usually associated with (1) BMI>25 kgm−2, (2) HbA1c score >10% (86 mmol/mol), and (3) DM duration >10 years. The three risk criteria were further evaluated using the binary classification test. The predictions were reported to be fairly accurate and reliable in detecting stiffened tissues. The study has successfully identified the strong association of BMI, HbA1c, and DM duration with the plantar tissue properties. Special attention should be given to the high risk group with BMI>25 kgm−2, HbA1c score >10% (86 mmol/mol), and DM duration >10 years. The high diagnostic odds ratio attained suggests its potential usefulness in helping clinicians to diagnose diabetic foot more efficiently.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103567
JournalJournal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
Volume103
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2020

Keywords

  • Body mass index
  • Diabetic ulcer
  • HbA1c
  • Indentation
  • Plantar tissue stiffness

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