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Vascular and Microvascular

Vascular and Microvascular, Vascular Scan 

The Ernest Cooke Vascular and Microvascular Unit is dedicated to the development of non-invasive measurements in peripheral Vascular and Microvascular blood flow. Techniques available include Duplex Ultrasound Scanning, Treadmill exercise, Uni- and Bi-directional Doppler Flowmetry, Venous Occlusion Stain-gauge Plethysmography, Infra-red Photoplethysmography Thermography and Capillaroscopy. The Unit also has an active clinical research programme.

Services provided:

The unit provides a range of non-invasive tests to exclude arterial and venous disease.

Microvascular Investigations

Finger Nailfold Capillaroscopy a very sensitive, non-invasive microscopy test that visualises the hairpin-shaped capillaries in the nailfolds. It is used to identfy:

Vascular and Microvascular, Microvascular Scan 
  • Cold hands.
  • Raynaud's Disease.
  • Connective Tissue Diseases associated with cold hands or Raynaud's.
  • Acrocyanosis of the hands (blue and sweaty hands), Erythromelalgia (episodic hotness and painful redness of the hands).

Thermography this test is performed by means of a state-of-the-art infrared camera that sees the heat generated by the human body and translates it into colour scale. It is used to identify:

Vascular and Microvascular, Thermography 
  • Cold hands.
  • Raynaud's Disease.
  • Connective Tissue Diseases associated with cold hands or Raynaud's.
  • Complex Regional Pain Syndromes (formerly known as RSD).

Vascular Investigations

Ankle/Brachial Index this is first line arterial test for patients complaining of pain when walking. The Ankle/Brachial Index is taken during rest and after standardised treadmill test. It helps to exclude arterial disease.

Arterial Duplex and Colour Ultrasound this is reliable in detecting stenosis, occlusions, plaque characterisation, measurement of flow and vessel diameter. It is used to identify:

  • Carotid Arteries.
  • Lower and Upper Limbs.
  • Aneurysms i.e. Aortic and Popliteal Arteries.
  • Graft Surveillance (synthetic or vein).

Venous Duplex and Colour Ultrasound this is sensitive and specific in detecting venous thrombosis and venous reflux. It is used to identify:

  • Thrombosis within upper and lower limb.
  • Assessment Of Venous Reflux of the lower limb and Marking Source of Varicose Veins Prior to Surgery.
  • A-V Fistula Assessment (patency, arterial insufficiency and thrombosis).

Calf Muscle Pump Efficiency with aid of strain gauge plethysmography and photo plethysmography able to precisely quantify drainage of venous flow from the leg.


Patient information

Ernest Cooke Vascular and Microvascular Unit - What to expect and do on the day and prior to your appointment
Download Microvascular patient information.

Ernest Cooke Vascular and Microvascular Unit - What to expect
Download Vascular patient information.


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