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Implementation of Single-Tab Electrodes for Bioimpedance Spectroscopy Measures

ABSTRACT

Background: Bioimpedance spectroscopy (BIS) demonstrates proficiency in early identification of breast cancer treatment-related lymphedema (BCRL) development. Dual-tab electrodes were designed for consistent and easy electrode placement, however, single-tab electrodes positioned to mimic dual-tab placement on the body may make BIS technology more accessible in community hospitals and outpatient settings. The purpose of this study is to evaluate use of single-tab electrodes for BIS measurements and assess whether single-tab electrodes provide consistent BIS measurements in controls and patients with BCRL. Methods and Results: Upper limb BIS ratios were obtained using ImpediMed L-Dex® U400 in controls (n = 13; age = 23-75 years; 9 repeated measurements) using dual-tab and single-tab electrodes. BCRL patients (n = 17; Stage = 1.65 ± 0.49; number nodes removed = 16.3 ± 7.7; age = 50.9 ± 10.6 years; age range = 33-77 years) and healthy controls (n = 19) were evaluated to determine if single-tab electrodes provided discriminatory capacity for detecting BCRL. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC), linear mixed-effects models, Wilcoxon rank-sum tests, and linear regression with two-sided p-values <0.05 required for significance were applied. Single-tab electrodes were found to be statistically interchangeable with dual-tab electrodes (ICC = 0.966; 95% confidence interval = 0.937-0.982). No evidence of differences in single-tab versus dual-tab measurements were found for L-Dex ratios (p = 0.74) from the linear mixed-effects model. Repeated trials involving reuse of the same electrodes revealed a trend toward increases in L-Dex ratio for both styles of electrodes. Single-tab electrodes were significant (p < 0.0001) for discriminating between BCRL and control subjects. Conclusion: Findings expand upon the potential use of BIS in clinic and research settings and suggest that readily available single-tab electrodes provide similar results as dual-tab electrodes for BIS measurements.

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