Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Move your arms to beat leg pain, study says

08.06.2006


Scientists at Sheffield Hallam University have discovered that simple arm exercises could help beat a crippling leg condition that affects one in twenty people over 55 in the UK.



The team, along with staff at the University of Sheffield, has found that upper body aerobic exercise can help the battle against peripheral vascular disease (PVD), a blood circulation problem, which causes severe leg pain and leaves patients struggling to walk even short distances.

This is the first large-scale trial of its kind to show that a regular workout of the upper body can help ease the chronic leg pain associated with PVD. The British Heart Foundation-funded study found that exercising the upper body by ’arm-cranking’, stationary cycling using the arms, improved cardiovascular fitness over a 24-week period and enabled patients to walk for longer without experiencing pain.


The findings are a boost for patients with PVD, who can find even moderate walking exercise difficult and may require surgery in severe cases.

More than a hundred patients with PVD aged between fifty and 85 were recruited from the Sheffield Vascular Institute at the Northern General Hospital.

Pain tolerance levels were measured in a series of walking tests at six-weekly intervals and the total improvements were calculated at the end of the 24 weeks. The average maximum walking distance increased by nearly a third (29 %), equal to an extra one hundred metres. Patients could also walk for fifty per cent longer before the onset of leg pain.

John Saxton, from Sheffield Hallam University’s Centre for Sport and Exercise Science, which conducted the study with the University of Sheffield’s School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, said:

"The cardiovascular function and walking ability of the patients with PVD who took part in the arm exercise programme both improved. The onset of leg pain was delayed during walking, and they were able to push themselves further beyond the pain barrier to achieve improvements in maximum tolerable walking distance. Our results suggest that a combination of physiological changes and an increase in exercise pain tolerance account for the observed improvement in walking ability.”

"The advantage of exercising the arms for patients with PVD is that they don’t generally encounter pain during this type of physical activity. This can help to increase their motivation and enthusiasm for exercise. A reduced level of physical activity potentially contributes to subsequent disability and increases the risk of cardiovascular problems occurring."

Peripheral vascular disease occurs when the arteries narrow or become blocked with fatty material. The artery can become so narrow that it can’t deliver enough oxygen-containing blood to the legs during walking exercise. This results in leg pain known as intermittent claudication and forces the person to stop and rest until it passes.

Smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure and a poor diet are high risk factors.

The study was recently published in the Journal of Vascular Surgery, a leading international scientific journal for this field of research.

Kate Burlaga | alfa
Further information:
http://www.shu.ac.uk/news

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Real-time feedback helps save energy and water
08.02.2017 | Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

From rocks in Colorado, evidence of a 'chaotic solar system'

23.02.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

'Quartz' crystals at the Earth's core power its magnetic field

23.02.2017 | Earth Sciences

Antimicrobial substances identified in Komodo dragon blood

23.02.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>