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Ankle Brachial Pressure Index (ABPI)

The measurement of Ankle Brachial Pressure Index (ABPI) is a useful, non-invasive test performed during investigations of vascular function and has long been used to aid detection and diagnosis of peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Deriving the ABPI, by dividing the systolic blood pressure at the ankle by the systolic blood pressures in the arm is relatively simple to perform and is widely used. Some patients presenting with PAD are asymptomatic, and an abnormal ABPI is the first indication of the presence of disease. Calculation of the ABPI is also used in some studies to classify patients with peripheral arterial occlusive disease. ABPI is known to be unreliable on patients with arterial calcification which results in less or incompressible arteries, as the stiff arteries produce falsely elevated ankle pressure. This is often found in patients with diabetes mellitus. 41% of patients with PAD have diabetes, renal failure, or are heavy smokers.

Equipment recommendations

We recommend the moorVMS-VASC PC software to streamline the measurement and analysis together with a single or dual channel moorVMS-LDF monitor and multi-fibre skin probes (VP1T/7). The CUFF-Arm (or CUFF - Arm RD) can be used on the ankle and forearm, although a full range is available to accommodate a range of limb sizes. The moorVMS-PRES provides automation of the cuff inflation / deflation protocol.

What's next?

Contact us to discuss your specific needs and to request your copy of our free Application Note which includes a detailed experimental method and practical suggestions. We also offer no obligation on-site visits so you can test the equipment in your facility.


Hyun S., Forbang N., Allison M. A., Denenberg J. O., Criqui M. H., Ix J. H. 2014. Ankle brachial index, toe brachial index and cardiovascular mortality in persons with and without diabetes mellitus. Original Research Article. Journal of Vascular Surgery, In Press, Corrected Proof, Available online 21 March 2014.

Potier L., Abi Khalil C., Mohammedi K., Roussel R. 2011. Use and Utility of Ankle Brachial Index in Patients with Diabetes. Review Article. European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, V41 (1), pp110-116.

American Diabetes Association, 2003. Peripheral arterial disease in people with diabetes. Diabetes care, V26 (12), pp3333- 3341.

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