Original Article

European Journal of Applied Physiology

, Volume 104, Issue 6, pp 991-998

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

The effect of bed rest and an exercise countermeasure on leg venous function

  • Noortje T. L. van DuijnhovenAffiliated withDepartment of Physiology 143, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre
  • , Michiel W. P. BleekerAffiliated withDepartment of Physiology 143, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical CentreDepartment of Internal Medicine, Bernhoven Hospital
  • , Patricia C. E. de GrootAffiliated withDepartment of Physiology 143, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre
  • , Dick H. J. ThijssenAffiliated withDepartment of Physiology 143, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical CentreResearch Institute for Sports and Exercise Science, Liverpool Moores University
  • , Dieter FelsenbergAffiliated withCenter for Muscle and Bone Research, Charité-Campus Benjamin Franklin, Free University and Humboldt University Berlin
  • , Jörn RittwegerAffiliated withInstitute for Biophysical and Clinical Research into Human Movement, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • , Maria T. E. HopmanAffiliated withDepartment of Physiology 143, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre Email author 

Abstract

This study was performed to assess the effect of resistive vibration exercise during bed rest deconditioning on venous vascular dimension and function, as measured with ultrasound in the popliteal vein. Sixteen men were assigned to bed rest (BR-Ctrl) or bed rest with resistive vibration exercise (BR-RVE). Before and at 25 and 52 days of bed rest, popliteal vein diameter was measured at increasing cuff pressures. Venous capacitance and compliance were calculated from the pressure–volume curve. After 52 days of bed rest, BR-Ctrl showed no change in baseline popliteal vein diameter or compliance, while venous capacitance decreased. Resistive vibration exercise had no effect on the response in venous diameter, capacitance or compliance to 52 days of bed rest. The decline in venous capacitance due to long-term bed rest is not effectively counteracted by resistive vibration exercise, indicating that an alternative factor during bed rest deconditioning is responsible for venous changes.

Keywords

Bed rest deconditioning Ultrasound Venous capacitance Venous compliance