What is Blood Flow Restriction Therapy?

What is Blood Flow Restriction Therapy?

Blood Flow Restriction requires the application of a pneumatic cuff. It’s like a blood pressure cuff, only wider and reduces blood flow to the limbs down to 20%. It cuts off the outflow of blood short term. The band is essentially a tourniquet.

The therapist inflates the cuff to a pressure level specific to the patient’s body and physical condition. Then the patient will exercise at a low intensity, typically using weights of 300 to 100% less of what they would use under normal conditions.

It works equally well for athletes who want to build muscle and people with arthritis or those recovering from muscle or joint trauma. For instance, I personally can squat close to 500lbs. I don’t use any weights when using BFR because it makes my muscles fatigued and tired.

The Conditions Blood Flow Restriction Can Help With

The Conditions Blood Flow Restriction Can Help With

How Blood Flow Restriction Works…

How Blood Flow Restriction Works…

BFR forces the blood to stay in the muscle longer, expediting the process of muscle fatigue and failure. The process stimulates the body’s ability to repair the muscle fibers, so recovery takes less time.

Muscles Contract Harder- It’s important to understand that traditional resistance exercise already constricts blood vessels during moderate-force movements and contractions. BFR safely mimics this response at lower intensity levels.

Increased Blood Flow & Cellular Healing- The lack of oxygen in these muscles stimulates protein synthesis which is key to repairing the cells. BFR can improve blood flow and capillary growth, leading to better muscle performance and blood flow.

Enhances Nervous System Development- The direct fatigue that BFR causes to the muscle forces the nervous system to enlist the largest fast-twitch muscle fibers to help take over the restricted muscle’s duties.

If you have arthritis, muscle weakness, joint pains, or have recently had knee, hip, or elbow surgery, you should call us. This proven modality works for elite athletes, teenagers, and elderly patients. We offer this treatment at our physical therapy clinic in Fort Myers, FL, and Cape Coral, FL.

Blood Flow Restriction Success Stories

Blood Flow Restriction Success Story

Want Help to Decide If Blood Flow Restriction Therapy Is Right For You?

Want Help to Decide If Blood Flow Restriction Therapy Is Right For You?

Frequently Asked Questions About Blood Flow Restriction

Frequently Asked Questions About Blood Flow Restriction

Blood Flow Restriction performed properly by a trained Doctor of Physical Therapy is not only safe but an effective tool for rehabilitation. Current evidence supports BFR training as a way to improve muscular strength and hypertrophy for individuals with musculoskeletal dysfunction.

Blood Flow Restriction therapy only works on the extremities. Obviously, you can’t cut blood flow to the head or torso without causing immediate harm.

Additionally, you should avoid BFR if you have one of the following conditions:

  • Deep vein thrombosis (DVTs)
  • Hypertension (HTN)
  • Varicose veins
  • Blood clots
  • Cardiovascular disease (CVD)
  • Pregnant
  • Antiphospholipid Syndrome (Recurrent Thrombin’s)
  • Family history of VTE or on long term warfarin use
  • Thrombophilia
  • Infection within limb
  • Cancer currently
  • Vascular graft
  • Lymphedema
  • Antithrombin deficiency

Blood Flow Restriction should not be used during the early stages of an injury, the inflammation cycle, because it adds to the swelling.

At our clinic, Back In Motion Sport & Spine Physical Therapy, we use only FDA-approved devices. If you have any questions and need answers regarding the safety of BFR for your training or therapy, contact us for a free consultation.

BPR training creates remarkable muscle strength and size gains using low loads and fewer repetitions.

BFR is ideal for helping people to reduce the recovery time from joint injuries, arthritis, or surgery, whether professional athletes, veterans, or elderly patients.

Don’t Try This at Home!

It takes proper training and FDA-approved equipment to have this modality work.

Everyone’s blood pressure is different, and you need a trained therapist at your side to monitor the pressure and length of time the cuff stays on your limb. BFR is not a do-it-yourself project.

It can create health issues if not performed correctly.

BFR benefits people living with arthritis in two ways.

Benefit #1: Increased Strength

With only 20% of regular weights, there is much less strain and grinding on joint surfaces. Yet, it makes muscles work as hard and grow as if fully loaded with weight or resistance.

Benefit #2: Increased Healing Capabilities

Perfusion is a medical term referring to the delivery of blood to the capillaries in tissue and the passage of fluid through the circulatory system or lymphatic system. BFR therapy increases blood perfusion to the joints and nearby cartilage. For people with arthritis BFR helps heal cartilage and joints along with strengthening the surrounding muscles.

No. Just call and schedule your appointment! In the state of Florida, physician referrals are not required for Physical Therapy services.