Monofilaments are a reliable, cost effective method of testing for the presence or absence of protective sensation, thereby identifying patients at risk of developing diabetic foot ulcers. Monofilaments are “user friendly”, enabling patients to actively participate in their care. Sensory testing used in conjunction with ongoing physician care is a simple way to help decrease the incidence of foot ulcerations and amputations.
Peripheral Neuropathy affects sensory motor and autonomic nerves. Loss of protective sensation (LOPS) is the most significant predictor of diabetic foot ulceration. Assessment of LOPS is easily accomplished, by the clinician or patient/family, with an easy-to-use screening implement called a monofilament.
A 5.07 Semmes-Weinstein monofilament is specified, which is calibrated to apply 10 grams of force when pressed against the foot. This monofilament is recommended by the American LEAP program (Lower Extremity Amputation Prevention) and in Canada by the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario guidelines.
A very low cost sensory testing screening tool
Easy to use by the Health Care Provider or patient
Used to test for loss of protective sensation (L.O.P.S.)