Gait in people with nonhealing diabetes-related plantar ulcers

Journal article


Fernando, Malindu E., Crowther, Robert G., Lazzarini, Peter A., Sangla, Kunwarjit S., Wearing, Scott, Buettner, Petra and Golledge, Jonathon. (2019). Gait in people with nonhealing diabetes-related plantar ulcers. Physical Therapy. 99(12), pp. 1602-1615. https://doi.org/10.1093/ptj/pzz119
AuthorsFernando, Malindu E., Crowther, Robert G., Lazzarini, Peter A., Sangla, Kunwarjit S., Wearing, Scott, Buettner, Petra and Golledge, Jonathon
Abstract

Background
Abnormalities in gait have been associated with high plantar pressures and diabetes-related plantar foot ulcers. Whether these are a transient response to the ulcer or are representative of long-term lower limb biomechanical abnormalities is currently unknown.

Objective
The aim of this study was to examine whether 12 gait parameters identified as being associated with nonhealing diabetes-related plantar foot ulcers at baseline remained associated during a 6-month follow-up period.

Design
This was a longitudinal observational case-control study.

Methods
Gait assessments were performed at entry and twice during follow-up over a 6-month period in 12 participants with nonhealing diabetes-related plantar foot ulcers (case participants) and 62 people with diabetes and no history of foot ulcers (control participants) using a standardized protocol. Linear mixed-effects random-intercept models were used to identify gait parameters that consistently differed between case participants and control participants at all assessments after adjustment for age, sex, body mass index, presence of peripheral neuropathy, and follow-up time. Standardized mean differences (SMD) were used to measure effect sizes.

Results
Five of the 12 gait parameters were significantly different between case participants and control participants at all 3 time points. Case participants had a more abducted foot progression angle (SMD = 0.37), a higher pelvic obliquity at toe-off (SMD = −0.46), a greater minimum pelvic obliquity (SMD = −0.52), a lower walking speed (SMD = −0.46), and a smaller step length (SMD = −0.46) than control participants.

Limitations
The limitations included a small sample size, the observational nature of the study, and the inability to evaluate the impact of gait on wound healing.

Conclusions
This study identified abnormal gait parameters consistently associated with nonhealing diabetes-related plantar foot ulcers. Further research is needed to test the clinical importance of these gait characteristics.

Year2019
JournalPhysical Therapy
Journal citation99 (12), pp. 1602-1615
PublisherOxford University Press
ISSN0031-9023
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1093/ptj/pzz119
PubMed ID31411324
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85076584830
Page range1602-1615
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online14 Aug 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted20 Apr 2019
Deposited29 Nov 2023
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