Reproducibility of a continuous ramp lower body negative pressure protocol for simulating hemorrhage

Victoria L. Kay, Caroline A. Rickards

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13 Scopus citations


Central hypovolemia elicited by application of lower body negative pressure (LBNP) has been used extensively to simulate hemorrhage in human subjects. Traditional LBNP protocols incorporate progressive steps in pressure held for specific time intervals. The aim of this study was to assess the reproducibility of applying continuous LBNP at a constant rate until presyncope to replicate actual bleeding. During two trials (≥4 weeks intervening), LBNP was applied at a rate of 3 mmHg/min in 18 healthy human subjects (12M; 6F) until the onset of presyncopal symptoms. Heart rate (HR), mean arterial pressure (MAP), stroke volume (SV), total peripheral resistance (TPR), mean middle and posterior cerebral artery velocities (MCAv, PCAv), and cerebral oxygen saturation (ScO2) were measured continuously. Time to presyncope (TTPS) and hemodynamic responses were compared between the two trials. TTPS (1649 ± 98 sec vs. 1690 ± 88 sec; P = 0.47 [t-test]; r = 0.77) and the subsequent magnitude of central hypovolemia (%Δ SV −54 ± 4% vs. −53 ± 4%; P = 0.55) were similar between trials. There were no statistically distinguishable differences at either baseline (P ≥ 0.17) or presyncope between trials for HR, MAP, TPR, mean MCAv, mean PCAv, or ScO2 (P ≥ 0.19). The rate of change from baseline to presyncope for all hemodynamic responses was also similar between trials (P ≥ 0.12). Continuous LBNP applied at a rate of 3 mmHg/min was reproducible in healthy human subjects, eliciting similar reductions in central blood volume and subsequent reflex hemodynamic responses.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12640
JournalPhysiological Reports
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2015


  • Central hypovolemia
  • cerebral blood flow
  • ramp LBNP
  • repeatability
  • repeated design


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