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Physiol Meas. 2013 Feb;34(2):237-45. doi: 10.1088/0967-3334/34/2/237. Epub 2013 Jan 28.

Localized bioimpedance to assess muscle injury.

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Department of Electronic Engineering, Universitat Polit├Ęcnica de Catalunya, c/Jordi Girona 1-3, 08034 Barcelona, Spain.


Injuries to lower limb muscles are common among football players. Localized bioimpedance analysis (BIA) utilizes electrical measurements to assess soft tissue hydration and cell membrane integrity non-invasively. This study reports the effects of the severity of muscle injury and recovery on BIA variables. We made serial tetra-polar, phase-sensitive 50 kHz localized BIA measurements of quadriceps, hamstring and calf muscles of three male football players before and after injury and during recovery until return-to-play, to determine changes in BIA variables (resistance (R), reactance (Xc) and phase angle (PA)) in different degrees of muscle injury. Compared to non-injury values, R, Xc and PA decreased with increasing muscle injury severity: grade III (23.1%, 45.1% and 27.6%), grade II (20.6%, 31.6% and 13.3%) and grade I (11.9%, 23.5% and 12.1%). These findings indicate that decreases in R reflect localized fluid accumulation, and reductions in Xc and PA highlight disruption of cellular membrane integrity and injury. Localized BIA measurements of muscle groups enable the practical detection of soft tissue injury and its severity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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