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Article

Monitoring of Dynamic Plantar Foot Temperatures in Diabetes with Personalised 3D-Printed Wearables

1
Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, The University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK
2
Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering, The University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK
3
Research Centre for Musculoskeletal Science & Sports Medicine, Department of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester M15 6BH, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Bijan Najafi
Sensors 2021, 21(5), 1717; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21051717
Received: 22 January 2021 / Revised: 11 February 2021 / Accepted: 23 February 2021 / Published: 2 March 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Body Worn Sensors and Related Applications)
Diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs) are a life-changing complication of diabetes that can lead to amputation. There is increasing evidence that long-term management with wearables can reduce incidence and recurrence of this condition. Temperature asymmetry measurements can alert to DFU development, but measurements of dynamic information, such as rate of temperature change, are under investigated. We present a new wearable device for temperature monitoring at the foot that is personalised to account for anatomical variations at the foot. We validate this device on 13 participants with diabetes (no neuropathy) (group name D) and 12 control participants (group name C), during sitting and standing. We extract dynamic temperature parameters from four sites on each foot to compare the rate of temperature change. During sitting the time constant of temperature rise after shoe donning was significantly (p < 0.05) faster at the hallux (p = 0.032, 370.4 s (C), 279.1 s (D)) and 5th metatarsal head (p = 0.011, 481.9 s (C), 356.6 s (D)) in participants with diabetes compared to controls. No significant differences at the other sites or during standing were identified. These results suggest that temperature rise time is faster at parts of the foot in those who have developed diabetes. Elevated temperatures are known to be a risk factor of DFUs and measurement of time constants may provide information on their development. This work suggests that temperature rise time measured at the plantar surface may be an indicative biomarker for differences in soft tissue biomechanics and vascularisation during diabetes onset and progression. View Full-Text
Keywords: 3D printing; diabetes; diabetic foot; diabetic peripheral neuropathy; digital health; personalised medicine; prevention; foot temperature monitoring; telehealth; wearables 3D printing; diabetes; diabetic foot; diabetic peripheral neuropathy; digital health; personalised medicine; prevention; foot temperature monitoring; telehealth; wearables
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  • Externally hosted supplementary file 1
    Doi: 10.17632/ppwxdgbbx4.1
    Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.17632/ppwxdgbbx4.1
    Description: The data presented in this study are openly available in Mendeley Data at http://dx.doi.org/10.17632/ppwxdgbbx4.1
MDPI and ACS Style

Beach, C.; Cooper, G.; Weightman, A.; Hodson-Tole, E.F.; Reeves, N.D.; Casson, A.J. Monitoring of Dynamic Plantar Foot Temperatures in Diabetes with Personalised 3D-Printed Wearables. Sensors 2021, 21, 1717. https://doi.org/10.3390/s21051717

AMA Style

Beach C, Cooper G, Weightman A, Hodson-Tole EF, Reeves ND, Casson AJ. Monitoring of Dynamic Plantar Foot Temperatures in Diabetes with Personalised 3D-Printed Wearables. Sensors. 2021; 21(5):1717. https://doi.org/10.3390/s21051717

Chicago/Turabian Style

Beach, Christopher, Glen Cooper, Andrew Weightman, Emma F. Hodson-Tole, Neil D. Reeves, and Alexander J. Casson 2021. "Monitoring of Dynamic Plantar Foot Temperatures in Diabetes with Personalised 3D-Printed Wearables" Sensors 21, no. 5: 1717. https://doi.org/10.3390/s21051717

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