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Intramuscular Pressure Monitoring in Acute Compartment Syndrome

Duckworth, Andrew D. MSc, MRCSEd; McQueen, Margaret M. MD, FRCSEd(Orth)

doi: 10.1097/BTO.0b013e3182488217

In this review, we discuss the role of intramuscular pressure monitoring in the diagnosis of acute compartment syndrome. We present the problems associated with using the clinical signs of compartment syndrome alone, the benefits of using intramuscular pressure monitoring, the various methods and techniques available, and evidence regarding the diagnostic threshold level. The importance of continuous monitoring and the trend over time are highlighted, and suggested avenues of future research have been proposed.

Edinburgh Orthopaedic Trauma Unit, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK

The authors declare that they have nothing to disclose.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Andrew D. Duckworth, MSc, MRCSEd, Edinburgh Orthopaedic Trauma Unit, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, 51 Little France Crescent, Edinburgh EH16 4SU, UK. E-mail:

Received December 15, 2011

Accepted December 27, 2011

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.