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A haemodynamic study of the physiological mechanisms of the venous pump in the healthy human foot.

Authors
  • Broderick, Barry J
  • Corley, Gavin J
  • Quondamatteo, Fabio
  • Grace, Pierce A
  • Breen, Paul P
  • Olaighin, Gearoid
Type
Published Article
Journal
Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2008
Volume
2008
Pages
1411–1414
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1109/IEMBS.2008.4649430
PMID: 19162933
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Presented is a physiological study of the plantar venous plexus in the context of venous return. It is accepted that the plantar venous plexus acts as a peripheral venous pump, capable of emptying blood from the foot into the posterior tibial veins. Controversy still exists, however, over the precise physiological mechanism which is responsible for completely emptying the deep plantar veins of the foot. This study was designed to investigate whether weight bearing or muscular contraction was the dominant mechanism involved. This was achieved by comparing blood flow measurements taken from the posterior tibial and popliteal veins while performing specific foot exercises. Measurements were taken using Doppler ultrasound. Neuromuscular electrical stimulation was also used to study the blood flow obtained by artificially inducing contraction of the plantar venous plexus.

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