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Compact and portable digitally controlled device for testing footwear materials: Technical note

James G. Foto, BSME, CPed

Figure. Custom pneumatic device for calibration of load cells used in Cyclical Compression Tester.

To help prevent foot ulceration, foot-care providers often recommend placing custom insoles in the therapeutic footwear of diabetic patients who have no feeling in their feet. However, little scientific information is available to providers about the effectiveness and durability of the materials used to make the insoles. Previous studies examined various insole materials under rapid impact loading, simulating heel-strike during walking and running. The diabetic foot, where ulceration occurs most often, is better simulated at very low rates of loading. In this article, I describe the design and development of a computer-controlled device that simulates the forefoot phase of walking. This device quickly provides healthcare providers with useful information that will help them select appropriate insole materials for their patients.

Volume 45 Number 6, 2008
   Pages 893 — 900

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