Date of Award

2007

Degree Type

Dissertation

Department

Chemical And Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Davis, Brian

Subject Headings

Foot -- Diseases, Diabetes -- Complications, Foot -- Care and hygiene, Foot ulcers, Diabetic foot, Shear & pressure, Non-diabetic, Skin material properties, Finite element of foot, Electronic books. local

Abstract

The number of people diagnosed with diabetes in the U.S. has been showing a large increase. It has more than doubled during the period of 1980 to 2002. Approximately 18 million Americans have diabetes today with more than 5.2 million undiagnosed cases. While diabetes is categorized as an endocrine system disorder, some of its known complications are associated to the science of biomechanics. Foot ulcers are caused by vascular deterioration due to diabetes, but also directly related to the natural mechanical forces and loads applied to the feet. Therefore, studying these forces, their locations, distribution and their stresses may be a key to preventing the occurrence of these ulcers. This study utilizes the science of mechanics to investigate the stresses caused by the pressure distribution due to natural mechanical loading on the foot. These mechanical loads, when combined with vascular complications and physiological changes to the structure and tissue of the foot, may tend to increase the likelihood of foot ulceration

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