Why is it Crucial to Use Personalized Pressure?

05 June 2018

Blood Flow restriction rehabilitation is continuing to gain popularity among medical practitioners looking to provide the best outcomes for their patients. There is a significant amount of inconsistency in the BFR literature as far as parameters of application and devices being used. These inconsistencies in application have spilled over into the application of personalized blood flow restriction in a clinical setting. In a recent article published in the Journal of Medical and Biological Engineering, James McEwen, Johnny Owens, and Jeswin Jeyasurya addressed the primary reasons to use personalized pressure and a device that can maintain consistent pressures for BFR in a clinical or rehabilitation setting.

“An analysis of previous studies using an arbitrary fixed pressure of 200 mmHg or using a percentage of brachial systolic blood pressure (e.g. 130% of SBP) and cuffs of differing widths showed these methodologies of setting pressure may result in a significant number of subjects having cuff pressures above LOP (limb occlusion pressure). Complete arterial occlusion reduces the effectiveness of the BFR intervention… and higher pressures place a greater demand on the cardiovascular system compared to lower pressures during BFR rehabilitation.”

With the available information, using personalized pressure and a device that can consistently target and maintain/or adjust to changes in pressure is our safest way to perform BFR rehabilitation and standardize it in clinical settings and research trials. Consistently using a percentage of LOP will also serve as a way to control for variability in outcomes and facilitate improved protocol development moving forward.

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