Correlation between Tourniquet Duration and Reactive Hyperemia in the Upper Limb – (Pages 9-17)

Krešimir Bulić1,2, Dorotea Šijak1,*, Anko Antabak1,3 and Ivica Prlić4

1 Department of Surgery, University Hospital Centre Zagreb, Croatia; 2 Department of Plastic, Reconstructive and Breast Surgery, University Hospital Centre Zagreb, Croatia; 3 Department of Pediatric Surgery, University Hospital Centre Zagreb, Croatia; 4Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Medicine, Radiation Dosimetry and Radiobiology Unite,Zagreb, Croatia



The physiological reaction of postocclusive local reactive hyperemia is regulated by neurovascular mechanisms and it reflects the function of microcirculation. Thermoregulatory changes occur first, in the form of increased skin surface temperature, which is usually followed by an increase in local blood flow. This study investigated a correlation between tourniquet duration on the upper arm, and the appearance of reactive hyperemia in the distal parts of the upper limb. Changes were registered with infrared thermometer and infrared thermography, which provided us a highly precise view of distribution of reactive hyperemia. Changes of oxygen saturation of peripheral arterial blood and blood pressure were also recorded. Our research has shown that longer duration of tourniquet leads to more intense and longer lasting reactive hyperemia in the palmar region, followed by higher temperatures of the skin surface, without any changes in postocclusive values of SpO2.

Keywords:Infrared thermography, microcirculation, postocclusive hyperemia, skin temperature, tourniquet and thermoregulatory changes.