The use of deep inspiration preceding the valsalva maneuver and rapid expiration in color doppler imaging of the lower extremity veins

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      Deep inspiration preceding Valsalva maneuver and rapid expiration immediately following it (DIVE) enhance venous blood flow on color Doppler flow imaging (CDI). The effect of DIVE was assessed in 115 consecutive lower extremity examinations. Of these, 95 or 115 (83%) had negative CDI sonograms, and 20 of 115 (17%) had partially (six of 115) or completely (14 of 115) occluding deep vein thrombosis. DIVE enhanced venous blood flow in 68% of the negative cases, resulting in transient venous distention, and/or more complete color filling, and/or greater spectral flow velocities. The 14 cases with completely occluding thrombi showed no response to DIVE. Six cases with partially occluding thrombi showed moderate to mild response to DIVE, with improved color delineation of the residual patent lumen around the thrombus. The authors conclude that DIVE facilitates deep venous CDI, especially when compression cannot be used to augment venous flow.


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