These data from Houghton, Bower and Chant in this month’s JFAR
The aim of this systematic review was to evaluate the strength of the existing research to answer the question: Is an increase in skin temperature predictive of neuropathic foot ulceration in people with diabetes?
This study is a systematic review and meta-analysis of temperature-monitoring in the prediction and prevention of diabetic foot ulceration. Two investigators conducted a literature search for all relevant articles from the 1960 until July 2011. During this process the following data bases were searched: MEDLINE, Science Direct, AMED, Australian Medical Index, APAIS-Health, ATSIhealth, EMBASE, Web of Science and OneSearch. Keywords used in this search included diabetes, foot complications, ulceration, temperature-monitoring, prediction and prevention.
Results of the meta-analysis support the theory that an increase in skin temperature is predictive of foot ulceration when compared with the same site on the contralateral limb. The theory that there is a mean norm foot temperature which can be used as a benchmark to monitor pathological change was unsupported by this meta-analysis.