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Blood Flow Restriction Therapy

What is Blood Flow Restriction Therapy, BFRT? 

Blood Flow Restriction Therapy (BFRT) is a form of enhancing and speeding up muscle growth and strength via the application of external pressure in the form of the tourniquet over the extremities, be it arm or leg, usually while performing rehabilitative exercises. The applied pressure must be safe, specific yet sufficient to maintain arterial inflow while occluding venous outflow further from the occlusion site. BFRT allows patients to get stronger and bigger faster while exercising with lighter loads, thus reducing the overall pressure placed on the joints and tissues. This is extremely beneficial and important after knee or shoulder surgeries or anytime when exercising with high loads is medically contraindicated. It works especially well for quadriceps, deltoid  and rotator cuff strengthening, for example.This treatment is typically used with exercise, however sometimes can also involve the use of a compression cuff by itself. It originated in Japan in the 1960s and it was referred to as KAATSU therapy.

What to expect during BFRT

During BFR therapy, a patient works out with a pressure tourniquet cuff or cuffs placed on either leg, arm or even both arms or legs. That tourniquet’s job is to partially restrict venous blood flow, but not arterial inflow to the extremity. Doing this produces a systemic response of pooling of the metabolites like anabolic stress hormones, which contributes to faster muscle and strength growth, mimicking heavy weight training. High repetitions yet low intensity of only 20-30% of 1RM of a particular exercise while wearing a pressure tourniquet cuff allows the patient to receive the benefits of heavy lifting without the unnecessary stress to joint and tissues still healing from a recent surgery or injury. Typical session includes the DPT measuring the exact patient specific pressure needed to safely occlude arterial blood flow called Limb Occlusion Pressure (LOP)  which is calculated by the use of Ultrasound Doppler equipment. Then a patient specific custom cuff pressure is calculated as 40-80% of LOP, depending on the limb. This important safety measure ensures no damage to tissues while maximizing the benefits of this technique in a shortest possible time. Great strength and muscle growth gains take only 4 weeks if done 2-3 times a week.

Our equipment is by Edge Mobility System

Call our office at 561-558-5156 to schedule an evaluation and treatment.

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