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Response of Charcot's arthropathy to contact casting: assessment by quantitative techniques

Abstract

Aims/hypothesis. This study used two different methods of quantitative bone scanning to study the relation between activity of Charcot's arthropathy and clinical variables over 12 months.¶Methods. Skin temperature of affected and unaffected feet was measured at baseline and every 3 months for 12 months in 17 subjects. Eight subjects underwent a three-phase quantitative bone scan at baseline and 3 monthly for 12 months. Bone isotope uptake in a standard rectangular area over the foot and tibia was analysed by the bilateral scan method (the ratio of isotope uptake of affected and unaffected feet) and the unilateral scan method (the ratio of isotope uptake of affected foot and ipsilateral tibia). The affected foot was placed in a contact cast for an average of 8 months.¶Results. At presentation the affected foot was hotter than the unaffected foot but the temperature became progressively cooler over 12 months. Median isotope uptake in the affected foot was 2.1 % of the injected dose (interquartile range, IQR 1.9–3.0). In both scanning methods the ratio of uptake decreased after casting but at 12 months the affected foot still had more isotope uptake. There was a strong correlation between temperature difference and the ratio of uptake in the bilateral scan method (r = 0.90; p < 0.0001) but when using the unilateral scan method this relation was not significant (r = 0.1; p = 0.6). A strong relation existed between perfusion of the affected foot in the dynamic phase and isotope uptake in the delayed phase of the scans (r = 0.92; p < 0.0001).¶Conclusion/interpretation. Bone activity and skin temperature of Charcot's arthropathy can be measured quantitatively and both improve over 12 months with contact casting. There is a strong relation between perfusion and disease activity in this condition. [Diabetologia (2000) 43:481–484]

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Received: 11 October 1999 and in revised form: 1 December 1999

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McGill, M., Molyneaux, L., Bolton, T. et al. Response of Charcot's arthropathy to contact casting: assessment by quantitative techniques. Diabetologia 43, 481–484 (2000). https://doi.org/10.1007/s001250051332

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  • Keywords Complications, neuropathy, foot, radionuclide scan, podiatry.