H-Wave Effects on Blood Flow and Angiogenesis in Longitudinal Studies in Rats


Effects of repeated H-Wave device stimulation (HWDS) on blood flow and angiogenesis in the rat hind limb were studied. The hypothesis tested was that HWDS acutely increases hind limb blood flow, and that repeated HWDS would elicit angiogenesis. Animals were HWDS-conditioned (‘‘Conditioned’’) or shamstimulated (‘‘Sham’’) (n D 5/group) daily for 3 weeks. The contralateral limb in both groups served as the control. Each animal was injected with bromodeoxyuridine (BrDU). After 3 weeks, rats were anesthetized and iliac artery blood flow was measured bilaterally before, during, and after acute HWDS. HWDS of the Conditioned limbs elicited a 247% increase in blood flow above resting conditions compared to a 200% increase in control legs. Sham animals did not demonstrate between-leg differences in flow. Hindlimb musculature staining for BrDU revealed angiogenesis in Conditioned versus Sham groups. Flow changes accompanying HWDS corroborated earlier microvascular findings demonstrating a significant striated muscle arteriolar dilation with HWDS. (Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances 20(4):255–259, 2011)

Thomas L. Smith, PhD, Michael F. Callahan, PhD, Kenneth Blum, PhD2,
Nicholas A. DiNubile, MD, Thomas J. H. Chen, PhD and Roger L. Waite, DC