EECP Therapy: Enhanced External Counterpulsion

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Filed Under: Clinical Therapies
Last Reviewed 05/20/2014

Enhanced external counterpulsation (EECP) is a nonsurgical therapy with incredible benefits for the cardiovascular system. It is a superior treatment for any condition in which poor circulation and impaired arterial function play a role.

How Does EECP Therapy Work?

EECP therapy is sometimes referred to as a “natural bypass” because it stimulates the formation of collateral circulation, or new blood vessels around clogged arteries. As a result, it effectively reduces angina and shortness of breath and improves exercise tolerance in patients with heart disease or heart failure.

In fact, studies conducted at leading university medical centers have shown that patients who undergo a course of EECP therapy have fewer and less intense episodes of angina, require less anti-angina medication, can walk farther without experiencing chest pain and are able to resume work and social activities.

EECP therapy also enhances arterial health and boosts circulation to organs and tissues throughout the body.

What Is a Typical EECP Therapy Session Like?

EECP therapy is done on an outpatient basis and requires no post-treatment recovery period.

During a typical session, you lie on a bed wearing a series of adjustable cuffs around your calves, lower thighs, and upper thighs. As the cuffs are inflated in sequence, blood is pushed up from your lower limbs toward your heart. Then, just before your heart pumps, the cuffs deflate, reducing resistance and decreasing your heart’s workload.

Each EECP treatment lasts about an hour, during which you can read, listen to music, or simply relax. A full treatment regimen consists of 35 sessions, undertaken once or twice a day over the course of a few weeks.

What Conditions Is EECP Therapy Good For?

Learn more about how we use EECP therapy at the Whitaker Wellness Institute.

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