Document Type : Research articles


1 Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Physical Therapy, Physiotherapy Research Center, School of Rehabilitation, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 2Assistant Professor, Department of Physical Therapy, Physiotherapy Research Center, School of Rehabilitation, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Professor, Department of Physical Therapy, Physiotherapy Research Center, School of Rehabilitation, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

4 Professor, Endocrinology and Metabolism Research Center, Endocrinology and Metabolism Clinical Sciences Institute, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

5 Professor, Department of Basic Sciences, Proteomics Research Center, School of Rehabilitation, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Introduction: Peripheral neuropathy is one of the major complications of type II diabetes mellitus. Lower limb proprioceptive impairments due to neuropathy can lead to balance disorders in these patients. The present study aimed to investigate postural stability and neuropathic changes following ankle proprioceptive training in type II diabetic patients with moderate neuropathy.
Materials and Methods: The present study was conducted on 24 type II diabetic patients with moderate neuropathy (9 females and 15 males) aged 40-65 years (with a mean age of 57.25 years). The treatment consisted of ankle proprioceptive training by the balance board and rocker for 10 consecutive days. Balance indices, including Overall Stability Index (OSI), Anterior-Posterior Stability Index (APSI), and Medial-Lateral Stability Index (MLSI), were measured with Biodex system before and after the treatment, as well as two weeks after treatment in two conditions: condition1: Eyes open, head straight, without using trunk, pelvis, thigh, and knee constrained orthosis. Condition 2: Eyes closed, head back (hyperextension), with using trunk, pelvis, thigh, and knee constrained orthosis. Plate-based Biodex stability was fixed at levels 6 and 8 for condition1 and level 8 for condition 2. The severity of neuropathy was assessed using Valk and Michigan questionnaires, as well as light touch sensation. The analysis of variance with repeated measure was used to evaluate alterations in the stability of patients. Furthermore, the correlation of neuropathic changes and stability parameters were assessed by the Pearson correlation coefficients.
Results: Significant improvements were observed in OSI in all tests of condition 1 (Biodex Balance System (BBS) at level 8 (P=0.001) and level 6 (P=0.017), as well as test conditions 2 (level 8; P=0.004). After the treatment, at stability level 8, a significant improvement in the mean values of postural sways in the Anterior-Posterior (AP) direction demonstrated that the ankle strategy was improved in the patients. After the treatment, the scores of the Valk (P=0.02) and Michigan (P=0.001) questionnaires were significantly decreased. After two weeks of follow-up, the observed improvement was maintained in the mean values of balance indices (OSI, APSI) and neuropathy due to treatment.
Conclusion: As evidenced by the obtained results, 10 sessions of targeted ankle proprioceptive training improved stability, neuropathy, and light touch sensation of the foot in type II diabetic patients with moderate neuropathy. Foot somatosensory information is one of the most important causes of balance alterations in these patients


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