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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2015 July-August;55(7-8):768-75

Copyright © 2015 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Changes in femoral artery blood flow during thermoneutral, cold, and contrast-water therapy

Ménétrier A. 1, Béliard S. 1, Ravier G. 2, Mourot L. 2, 3, Bouhaddi M. 1, 4, Regnard J. 1, 4, Tordi N. 3, 5

1 EA3920 Marqueurs Pronostiques et Facteurs de Régulations des Pathologies Cardiaques et Vasculaires, Plateforme Exercice Performance Santé Innovation, SFR FED 4234, Franche‑Comté University, Besançon, France;
2 EA4660 Laboratoire Culture Sport Santé Société, Plateforme Exercice Performance Santé Innovation, Franche‑Comté University, Besançon, France;
3 EA4267 Fonctions et Dysfonctions Epithéliales, Plateforme Exercice Performance Santé Innovation, Franche‑Comté University, Besançon, France;
4 Physiologie‑Exploration Fonctionnelles, CHRU de Besançon, France;
5 Centre d’Investigation Clinique INSERM CIT 808, CHRU de Besançon, France


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AIM: The purpose of this study was to examine the changes in femoral artery blood flow during cold water immersion (CWI), contrast water therapy (CWT) and thermoneutral water immersion (TWI).
METHODS: Ten athletes came to the laboratory three times, to complete a 20-min procedure in upright position: 4 min in air (baseline), then 16-min full leg TWI (~35 °C), CWI (~12 °C) or CWT (2:2 ~12 °C to ~35 °C) min ratio, in a random order. Blood flow was measured every 2 min: baseline (i.e. min 3 and 1) and throughout water immersion (i.e. min 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13 and 15), using Doppler ultrasound in the superficial femoral artery, distal to the common bifurcation (~3 cm), above the water and stocking.
RESULTS: Compared with baseline, blood flow was significantly higher throughout TWI (min 1 to 15: P<0.001; +74.6%), significantly lower during CWI (from min 7 to 15: P<0.05; -16.2%) and did not change during CWT (min 1 to 15). No changes in blood flow occurred between the hot and cold transitions of CWT.
CONCLUSION: This study shows that external hydrostatic pressure (TWI ~35 °C) significantly increases femoral artery blood flow. We also show that associating hydrostatic pressure with cooling (CWI ~12 °C) decreases femoral artery blood flow after a sufficient duration, whereas associating hydrostatic pressure with alternating brief exposures to contrasted temperatures does not change femoral artery blood flow under resting conditions.

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arnaud.menetrier@laposte.net