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Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2000 Feb;81(2):139-43.

Functional electrical stimulation effect on orthostatic hypotension after spinal cord injury.

Author information

1
Division of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Faculty of Medicine, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the possibility of using functional electrical stimulation (FES) to control orthostatic hypotension in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI) and to clarify the mechanism of the response.

DESIGN:

Subjects were tilted by 10 degree increments with varying intensities of lower-extremity FES. Stimulation over muscles was compared to stimulation over noncontractile sites.

SETTING:

Physical therapy department of a major rehabilitation center.

PATIENTS:

Six patients with SCI above T6 (3 with recent injury recruited consecutively from an inpatient spinal cord rehabilitation unit, and 3 from the community with longstanding injury, recruited as volunteers).

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Blood pressure, heart rate, and perceived presyncope score recorded at each tilt angle and analyzed using a multivariate analysis of variance statistical methodology.

RESULTS:

Systolic and diastolic blood pressure increased with increasing stimulation intensities (systolic, p = .001; diastolic, p = .0019) and decreased with increasing angle of tilt (p < .001) regardless of the site of stimulation. Subjects tolerated higher angles of incline with electrical stimulation than without (p = .03).

CONCLUSIONS:

FES causes a dose-dependent increase in blood pressure independent of stimulation site that may be useful in treating orthostatic hypotension.

PMID:
10668765
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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