Objectives: To determine abnormal vascular response to cuff ischemia in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI). Methods: Ankle blood pressure (ABP) and ankle-brachial index (ABI) in 20 SCI patients (14 men, 6 women, mean age 39.8 years) and control group (14 men, 6 women, mean age 40.2 years) were measured using impedance plethysmography at rest and after distal thigh cuff compression for 5 and 10 minutes. The patients were divided into tetraplegia (10), paraplegia (10), complete injury (8) and incomplete injury (12). Results: There was no significant difference in ABP and ABI at rest and 5 minutes of ischemic compression between the patients and control groups. However, ABP and ABI decreased more at 10 minutes of ischemic compression in SCI compared to control groups (p<0.001). Changes of ABP and ABI between tetraplegia and paraplegia were not different. Complete injury of SCI decreased more than incomplete injury at 10 minutes of ischemia in the APB and ABI (p<0.001). Conclusion: Vascular control was significantly impaired in patients with spinal cord injury. Impedance plethysmography can be a useful and objective tool in evaluation of vascular response for the patients with spinal cord injury.
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