Blood Flow Restriction Training to Improve Muscle Strength and Function following knee injury
Quadriceps muscle weakness is a common consequence following anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury and reconstruction. Maximizing quadriceps strength following ACL injury is significant as diminished quadriceps strength has been linked to the osteoarthritis that affects over 50% of surgically reconstructed limbs. Given that knee joint health following ACL injury is predicated on restoring quadriceps strength, identifying treatment approaches capable of improving strength is paramount. Blood flow restriction training (BFRT) is a method where oxygen to the muscle is intentionally reduced during exercise/rehabitilitation and may lead to more timely and substantial strength gains. In the proposed project, we will examine the efficacy of BFRT in patients who have undergone ACL reconstruction and suffer from substantial quadriceps weakness. Further, we will examine the mechanisms through which BFRT leads to strength gains.