Timing of peak plantar pressure during the stance phase of walking. A study of patients with diabetes mellitus and transmetatarsal amputation

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  • 1 Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63108, USA.
  • | 2 Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63108, USA.
  • | 3 Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63108, USA.
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High plantar pressures contribute to skin breakdown in patients with diabetes mellitus and peripheral neuropathy. The primary purpose of this study was to determine the point during the stance phase of walking that corresponds with forefoot peak plantar pressures. Results indicate that peak plantar pressures occurred at 80% +/- 5% of the stance phase of gait in subjects with diabetes and transmetatarsal amputation, as well as in control subjects. Improved methods of footwear design or walking strategies proposed to patients should focus on the demands of the foot during the late stance phase of walking in order to increase available weightbearing area or to decrease forces, which will minimize plantar pressures and reduce trauma to the neuropathic foot.