Vibration-based mobile phone apps can help to detect neuropathy in those at risk of diabetic foot ulcer, study finds

The reliability of using vibration-based apps on mobile phones to detect peripheral neuropathy among people with a risk of diabetic foot ulcer has been put to the test.

Researchers in Indonesia conducted the study over three phases – a pilot study, concurrent validity study, and interreliability study. They compared a 128 Hz tuning fork and the Vibrations-Test app on a mobile phone in a primary care setting.

The pilot study confirmed that the vibration-based mobile phone has an adequate reliability (r > 0.70, P < .001). The concurrent validity test involved 96 participants (aged 55.78 ± 8.32 years), with the Pearson correlation test finding the highest correlation in the fifth metatarsal heads (r = 0.741, right feet; 0.772, left feet; P < .001).

The results showed that “in the four primary care settings, the interrater reliability between nurses of the vibration-based cell phone were k = 1.000, 1.000, 1.000, and 0.720. The concurrent validity test found moderate to strong correlation results and that the interrater reliability had a strong agreement that was almost perfect.”

The team, which included researchers from the College of Health Science Karya Kesehatan and Hasanuddin University, concluded: “Vibration-based cell phone applications can be used as screening tools for detecting neuropathy among individuals with a risk of DFU.”

Click here to access the study.

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