The diagnostic value of pedobarography

Pedobarography can quantify static and dynamic foot pressure. Despite an increase in the clinical use of pedobarography, the results and the clinical diagnosis do not always correlate, leading to confusion and misdiagnosis. The authors evaluated the potential of pedobarography to diagnose several diseases associated with abnormal pressure across the plantar surface. The study included 72 patients (96 cases) between January 2009 and August 2012 with symptoms of excessive plantar pressure. The average age was 50.9 years (range, 18-92). Patients had the lesion for an average of 17 months (range, 8-29). Pedobarographic measurements were used to evaluate the compatibility between the highest pressure on pedobarography and the clinical peak pressure with plantar ulcers or calluses. Maximal peak pressure was evaluated by static and dynamic measurements using numeric and graphic measurements in pedobarography. The diagnostic validity of pedobarography was analyzed by comparing clinical peak pressure and pedobarographic measurements. The diagnostic validity of pedobarography was 17.7% to 51% for static measurement and 13.5% to 49% for dynamic measurement. The diagnostic validity of pedobarography was low for intractable plantar keratosis and metatarsal head callus associated with metatarsophalangeal dislocation in rheumatoid arthritis. However, it was 57% to 100% for Charcot arthropathy with midfoot ulcers. When used to compare numeric pressure and graphic peak pressure for each part of the foot, pedobarography showed low diagnostic correlation. Based on the study results, the diagnostic validity of pedobarography is low.

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