Can Walking Sensors Help Predict The Outcome Of Diabetic Limb Salvage Surgery?

David G. Armstrong DPM MD PhD

In the past, surgery designed to heal wounds or reduce the risk for development of wounds in people with diabetes has been haphazard. A recently published pilot study in Gait & Posture suggests strongly that we can work toward predicting success preoperatively.1 See

The study, which uses cutting-edge sensors that sample pressure points on the bottom of the foot while patients walk, employs an entirely new way of analyzing the data. This could revolutionize the way we perform reconstructive surgery in people with diabetes.

“We can now learn from previous works and use sophisticated algorithms to see deformities and help the surgeon plan the procedure,” adds lead study author Bijan Najafi, PhD, an Assistant Professor and Director of the Human Performance Lab at the Center for Lower Extremity Ambulatory Research (CLEAR) at the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and science.

We believe that all clinics may one day have sensors like this and we can go a long way toward reducing unnecessary amputations, which occur once every 30 seconds around the world.


1. Najafi B, Crews RT, Armstrong DG, Rogers LC, Aminian K, Wrobel J. Can we predict outcome of surgical reconstruction of Charcot neuroarthropathy by dynamic plantar pressure assessment? — A proof of concept study. Gait Posture 31(1):87-92, 2010.

Editor’s note: This blog has been adapted with permission. It originally appeared at

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