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Doppler Analog Waveform Analysis

Doppler analog waveforms may be obtained using a continuous-wave Doppler probe and may be analyzed qualitatively analogous to plethysmographic waveforms. Normal lower-extremity Doppler waveforms are triphasic, with a reverse flow component in early diastole and low end-diastolic forward flow. The reverse flow component and low overall diastolic velocities reflect a relatively high end-organ resistance to blood flow in the resting extremity. With increasing proximal stenosis, the shape of the waveform changes. Initially, the reverse flow component is lost. With more severe degrees of stenosis, the rate of rise of the systolic upstroke is decreased, the amplitude of the waveform is diminished, and diastolic flow increases relative to systolic flow.

The primary clinical application of qualitative Doppler waveform analysis has been in assessing the adequacy of iliac artery inflow to the common femoral artery. An attenuated waveform recorded from the common …