Athletic Training M.S.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Johnson, Janet


Background: Blood flow restriction (BFR) is being shown to have many positive applications for the medical, and strength and conditioning fields. Recently, researchers and physical therapists have been applying these same concepts to patient populations of all ages and are using BFR to assist patients who have undergone major surgeries. A main goal for the use of BFR in rehabilitation is to increase quadricep strength in the rehabilitating patient, while also decreasing stress loads on the knee joint, whether it be the tibiofemoral joint or the patellofemoral joint. This decrease in stress helps the repairing tissue to recover strength without repetitive high compression forces, which can cause unwanted damage and slow down the recovery processes. Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to evaluate whether or not BFR is effective in the treatment and rehabilitation of postoperative anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLr) patients within the ages of 18-40 years old. Results: It was found that BFR is an effective treatment in the rehabilitation of postoperative ACLr patients within the ages of 18-40 years old. The effectiveness is defined by the patient outcomes on strength, function, and patient reported outcome measures (PROMs). Conclusion: Though the research on the topic of post-surgical ACLr patient’s rehabilitation with BFR has only a small sample size, from what we know about conventional and BFR rehabilitation with other post-surgical knee protocols, we can conclude the same benefits with BFR for ACLr patient will be effective. Implications for Research and Practice: The main implication for this research is that BFR allows practitioners to start patient’s rehabilitation sooner, resulting in similar, if not greater, strength gains. This also decreases the stress on the regenerating tissues, and therefore decreases pain during the patient's rehabilitation experience.

Degree Name

Athletic Training M.S.

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis

Included in

Kinesiology Commons