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  1. Genc, Arzu PT, PhD
  2. Koca, Ugur MD
  3. Gunerli, Ali MD


Passive limb exercises (PLEs) are used widely in the management of unconscious patients and an early start is recommended. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of PLEs on hemodynamic and respiratory parameters in mechanically ventilated critically ill patients receiving low-dose vasopressor/inotropic support. The charts of 120 mechanically ventilated patients who underwent PLEs were evaluated retrospectively between January 2000 and July 2002. Patients were grouped on the basis of administration of vasopressor/inotropic support. Thirty-eight patients did not get vasopressor/inotropic support (group 1) and 82 patients received low-dose vasopressor/inotropic support (dopamine <10 [mu]g/kg/min, noradrenaline/adrenaline <0.1; group 2). Central venous pressure, heart rate, mean arterial pressure, and oxygen saturation were recorded before and immediately after PLEs. After PLEs in group 1 patients, central venous pressure and mean arterial pressure values increased significantly, and in group 2 patients, central venous pressure increased significantly (P < .05). No statistically significant difference was observed in the rate of change of hemodynamic or respiratory parameters between the 2 groups after the PLEs (P > .05). This retrospective study confirmed that PLEs result in similar hemodynamic and respiratory changes in critically ill patients who received low-dose vasopressor/inotropic support versus those who do not.