Development of an ultrasound platform for the evaluation of plantar soft tissue properties: A feasibility study on silicone phantom feet

Yongping Zheng, J. G. Chen, H. Y. Ling

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


A novel ultrasound (US) platform, consisting of an embedded US transducer connected in series with a circular silicone layer, was developed to evaluate the mechanical properties of human plantar tissues in this study. Force exerted by the foot was determined based on the deformation of the silicone layer, which was measured by US. The platform could capture the deformations of both the silicone layer and plantar tissues simultaneously. The stiffness of the plantar tissue was then extracted from the force-deformation curve. To test the feasibility of the US platform, eight phantom feet with different stiffnesses were tested using this new system. The moduli of the phantom feet were also measured by the tissue ultrasound palpation system (TUPS). The results showed that the phantom stiffness determined using the platform was in linear correlation with the corresponding modulus measured by the TUPS (R2=0.8914). The current system can be improved by using several US transducers to perform multiple measurements at the same time for reliable assessment of human plantar tissues in a non-invasive, convenient, and cost-effective way.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)248-260
Number of pages13
JournalInstrumentation Science and Technology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2011


  • foot assessment
  • heel pad
  • plantar tissue
  • silicone phantom
  • ultrasound
  • ultrasound indentation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Instrumentation
  • Environmental Science(all)

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