Prolonged periods of ischemia/reperfusion are known to deleteriously affect skeletal muscle performance. However, in animal models, brief bouts of both skeletal and cardiac muscle ischemia/reperfusion have been shown to decrease skeletal muscle injury and increase skeletal muscle force output, a phenomenon termed "preconditioning". Because there are transient periods of ischemia/reperfusion during isometric and concentric muscle contractions, the purpose of this study was to examine how short duration forearm occlusion/reperfusion prior to exercise, influenced isometric skeletal muscle force output in humans. Eleven subjects (6 men and 5 women, mean age 25 +/- 1 years) participated in this study. Using a Biodex multijoint ergometer, a protocol of isolated, isometric forearm wrist flexions was utilized to measure muscle force output in two separate trials. In the first trial, 15 isometric maximal voluntary contractions (MVCs) of the wrist flexors were performed in 20 intervals interspersed with 10 s of rest. In the second trial, forearm occlusion was induced (2 min at 200 mmHg by blood pressure cuff occlusion, with 10 s of hyperemia) prior to exercise. Following cuff occlusion, an identical exercise protocol was followed, i.e. 15 isometric wrist flexor MVCs performed in 20 intervals interspersed with 10 s of rest. The total force output over 15 MVCs was greater following intermittent cuff occlusion (no occlusion 2619 +/- 320 ft.lbs vs cuff occlusion 2986 +/- 195 ft.lbs; p <0.05). The mean force output per MVC also increased during exercise following intermittent cuff occlusion (no occlusion 174 +/- 21 ft.lbs vs cuff occlusion 199 +/- 13 ft.lbs; p <0.05). In a second set of experiments, we found a 3 to 4 fold hyperemic blood flow following cuff occlusion. These data suggest that brief periods of cuff occlusion/reperfusion may increase repetitive MVC force output by skeletal muscle. Although further study is needed to fully understand the effects of occlusion/reperfusion on skeletal muscle force output, we hypothesize that, in part, this putative effects is secondary to the hyperemic blood flow which follows cuff occlusion.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1998|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine