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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015, Article ID 326493, 6 pages
Research Article

Plantar Loading Reflects Ulceration Risks of Diabetic Foot with Toe Deformation

1Zhejiang Wanli University, No. 8, South Qian Hu Road, Ningbo, Zhejiang 315100, China
2Faculty of Sports Science, Ningbo University, No. 818, Fenghua Road, Ningbo 315211, China

Received 4 January 2015; Accepted 25 February 2015

Academic Editor: Thomas S. Roukis

Copyright © 2015 Y. C. Lu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Diabetes has been one of the most common chronic diseases all over the world. The purpose of this study was to quantitatively assess the foot loading characteristics of diabetic patients with fifth-toe deformity through a comparative analysis with diabetic patients with healthy and normal feet. Six neuropathic diabetic female subjects with the fifth-toe deformation and six age-matched neuropathic diabetic controls without any feet deformities participated in the walking test. Dynamic barefoot plantar pressure was measured with Novel EMED force plate. Peak pressure and pressure-time integral for all 7 foot regions (rearfoot, midfoot, lateral forefoot, central forefoot, medial forefoot, great toe, and other toes) were collected. Peak pressure was significantly higher in the patients with toe deformity in rearfoot, central forefoot, and great toe regions compared with the control group. Meanwhile, loading sustaining period extended longer in great toe region of deformed group than in that of the control group, and the center of pressure was nearly in the big toe region during toe offstage. Diabetic patients with fifth-toe deformity could have plantar contact area reduction in the other toes part and increased loading to the great toe part. The result showed that fifth-toe deformity was associated with potential ulceration risk especially in hallux region.