Transcutaneous oximetry: normal values for the lower limb

Blake, Denise F., Young, Derelle A., and Brown, Lawrence H. (2014) Transcutaneous oximetry: normal values for the lower limb. Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine, 44 (3). pp. 146-153.

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Introduction: Current guidelines for transcutaneous oximetry measurement (TCOM) for the lower limb define tissue hypoxia as a transcutaneous oxygen partial pressure < 40 mmHg. Values obtained with some newer machines and current research bring these reference values into question.

Aim: To determine 'normal' TCOM values for the lower limb in healthy, non-smoking adults using the TCM400 oximeter with tc Sensor E5250.

Method: Thirty-two healthy, non-smoking volunteers had TCOM performed at six positions on the lower leg and foot. Measurements were taken with subjects lying supine breathing air, then with leg elevated and whilst breathing 100% oxygen.

Results: Room-air TCOM values (mean mmHg, 95% confidence interval (CI) ) were: lateral leg 41.3, CI 37.8 to 44.7; lateral malleolus 38.6, CI 34.1 to 43.1; medial malleolus 43.9, CI 40.2 to 47.6; dorsum, between first and second toe 39.3, CI 35.9 to 42.7; dorsum, proximal to fifth metatarsal-phalangeal joint 46.4, CI 43.4 to 49.3; plantar 52.3, CI 49.6 to 55.1. Using the currently accepted value of less than 40 mmHg for tissue hypoxia, 24 of our 32 'healthy' subjects had at least one air sensor reading that would have been classified as hypoxic. Seventeen subjects had TCOM values less than 100 mmHg when breathing 100% normobaric oxygen.

Conclusion: Normal lower limb TCOM readings using the TCOM400 with tc Sensor E5250 may be lower than 40 mmHg, used to define tissue hypoxia, but consistent with the wide range of values found in the literature. Because of the wide variability in TCOM at the different sensor sites we cannot recommend one TCOM value as indicative of tissue hypoxia. A thorough clinical assessment of the patient is essential to establish appropriateness for hyperbaric oxygen treatment, with TCOM used as an aid to help guide this decision, but not as an absolute diagnostic tool.

Item ID: 35496
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1833-3516
Keywords: transcutaneous oximetry, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, wounds, patient monitoring, standards
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Funders: Townsville Hospital and Health Service Private Practice Research and Education Trust Fund
Date Deposited: 02 Oct 2014 04:01
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1199 Other Medical and Health Sciences > 119999 Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920203 Diagnostic Methods @ 100%
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