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Electrotherapy Info

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Several different electrical stimulation devices exist, each producing different frequencies, waveforms, and effects. Electrical modalities include

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) (the most commonly used) Interferential Current (IFC) Galvanic Stimulation (GS)

Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulators (TENS) A person may use a TENS is not a unit at home for pain relief on a long-term basis. TENS units allow the user to adjust the intensity of the stimulation; some units also allow the user to select high-frequency stimulation (60 - 200 Hz) or low-frequency stimulation (<10 Hz).

High frequency stimulation, sometimes called "conventional", is tolerable for hours, but the resultant pain relief lasts for a shorter period of time. Low-frequency stimulation, sometimes called "acupuncture-like", is more uncomfortable and tolerable for only 20-30 minutes, but the resultant pain relief lasts longer.[citation needed]

Interferential current (IFC) Interferential current is essentially a deeper form of TENS. In essence, IFC modulates a high frequency (4000 Hz) carrier waveform with the same signal produced by a TENS unit. The high frequency carrier waveform penetrates the skin more deeply than a regular TENS unit, with less user discomfort for a given level of stimulation. Deep in the tissues, the carrier waveform is cancelled out,{{Fact}] resulting in a TENS-like signal deep under the skin.[citation needed]

Anecdotal evidence suggests that the IFC units may be useful for patients who have not had relief from TENS. However, IFC devices tend to be more expensive than TENS units.

Galvanic stimulation (GS) Galvanic stimulation, also known as galvanic revivification, involves the discharge of a battery into the body. To achieve the maximum affect of this form of supplementation of metabolic energy,[citation needed] the discharge should be delivered, transcutaneously, to the site of the neuromuscular junction, also called the motor end plate region. While open circuit voltages can be as high as 100 volts DC, the current passed should not exceed 5 to 50 milliamperes, and should be delivered in pulsed form, in simulation of the way the nervous system delivers energy to post synaptic structures, be they organs or muscles. These pulses can be as brief as 1/4 of a millisecond, and the frequency of pulses can be as high as 900 Hz. This transcutaneous delivery can be achieved using a wand, or merely immersion into water containing one of the electrodes, while the other is attached to the body outside of the water. The pulse delivered to the motor endplate region comes from the anode, not the cathode. The cathode should be allowed to corrode so that the electrical charge delivered to the body is greater than the electrical charge removed from the body by the cathode. The balance comes from the corroding cathode and the battery.WP:Patent nonsense

There is an equation from mathematical biology that fully supports this analysis. This equation relates metabolic rate to body mass and metabolic efficiency. The equation is P = W(4ì-1)/4ì where P is metabolic rate, W is body mass, and ì is metabolic efficiency. Metabolic efficiency is just the efficiency with which a biological organism of mass W is able to capture and use energy available to it. It is a ratio of the rate of reduction reactions to the rate of flow of electrons from oxidative reactions. In other words it is the statement of the efficiency of redox coupling between the organism and its cells, and the energy available to it from food and intracellular chemical reactions involving oxygen. Metabolic efficiency is therefore a statement of electrochemical efficiency, an efficiency which may be supplemented by oxidative reactions in a battery which make energy available for the numerator of the ratio, without increasing the denominator. The effect is exponentially increased metabolic rates.WP:Patent nonsense

When values are run through the equation ranging from -13e grams to +10e grams, and from 0% efficiency to 100% efficiency, the resulting graphs and tables clearly model the appearance of life from chemistry, and its evolution from bacteria to whales, in terms of metabolic rate. Metabolism preceded and was a requirement for the appearance of RNA and DNA, and its evolution. Metabolism holds the key to the aging process, and how to intercede in it with a battery to extend life and health.WP:Patent nonsense

Galvanic Revivification is not electrotherapy. It is not medicine. It is not physiology. None of these things are soundly based in modern understanding of electricity. Galvanic revivification is chemistry and physics and mathematics, and contrasts starkly with the life sciences which are still in the 19th century with regard to electricity.[citation needed] The mathematics clearly show that if a 75 kg. human being were to boost metabolic efficiency from 32%, which translates to a 90 year life span, to 32.6% using galvanic revivification, that human could live a fit existence until the age of 120.WP:Patent nonsense

On the other hand, if that 75kg. human being's metabolic efficiency should drop from 32% to 30%, then that human being should die from metabolic problems like cancer or heart disease by the age of 58.WP:Patent nonsense And electrotherapy, radiation, surgery, pharmaceuticals, and prayer will do nothing to alter or slow that deterioration or eliminate or prevent those problems. WP:Patent nonsense

Applications and fields Various cells in the body are influenced by electricity, these include fibroblasts, macrophages, neutrophils and erythrocytes, along with bone, cartilage, ligaments and tendons. It is believed that stimulating these cells can promote healing in injured tissue.

Electrotherapy, in the form of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is increasingly used in the management of certain types of pain, although there is still much debate regarding its actual effectiveness. Some research has reported TENS to be as much as 65% effective in reducing pain in acute injuries.

Other forms of electrotherapy include Scenar, Ultrasound (US), Pulsed Shortwave Diathermy (PSWD), Interferential Therapy (I/F), TECAR therapy, Laser Therapy and Combination therapy.

Proponents of electrotherapy argue that the different modalities affect different tissues, e.g. ultrasound affects small areas such as ligaments and tendons and has no effect on muscles. Pulsed shortwave, however, can have a therapeutic effect on muscles.

From a treatment perspective, the questions with electrotherapy are related to the type of injury (sprain, haematoma, fracture, etc.) and the stage the injury is at (acute, repair phase, remodeling phase). From that position we must decide what type of cells we want to stimulate and what is the best way to influence them.

Pain Management: Physical Therapy Sometimes pain treatment can be accomplished through physical therapy. Physical therapy (PT) involves the treatment, healing, and prevention of injuries or disabilities. PT helps to relieve pain, promote healing, and restore function and movement.

PT is practiced by a professionally trained physical therapist under the referral of a doctor. A physical therapist is a specialist skilled and educated specifically in proper rehabilitation.

How Is Physical Therapy Used to Treat Pain?

A therapist may focus on decreasing pain with either passive or active therapy. Examples of passive physical therapy include:

-Heat/ice packs

-TENS units

-Ultrasound

      Examples of active physical therapy include:
  • Stretching
  • Strengthening exercises
  • Pain relief exercises
  • Low-impact aerobic conditioning
  • Points to Consider

    An important aspect to keep in mind about physical therapy is that each individual is different and may respond differently to therapy. People have different types of bodies, different patterns of movement, different alignments, and different habits. Physical therapists and their trained staff can monitor each individual and attempt to correct improper habits, alignments and movement patterns.

    Reviewed by the doctors at The Cleveland Clinic Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.





    You've probably heard a lot about muscle stimulators recently and chances are, you've heard TENS being mentioned, as well. They are both commonly advertised machines that you can get easily for home use. But what is the difference between these two treatments? If you aren't sure about this then you won't be able to make the best purchase decision.

    The main difference between the two is that a muscle stimulator is used to cause muscle contraction, while TENS focuses on nerve stimulation and tries to avoid contracting the muscles. Both use electrical pulses to do their job, but have different purposes.

    TENS
    The main use of a TENS machine is for pain relief, particularly in the case of chronic pain. It is most often used for joint or muscle pain that won't go away, but can also be used to help treat nerve problems without resorting to drugs. It isn't uniformly effective, that is, different people will have different results. For some, TENS electrical pulses interrupt the pain signals so effectively that they are literally without pain. For others, the relief is nearly non-existent, but most commonly, this treatment provides considerable relief from the chronic pain that haunts the user.

    On occasion, with medical consent, the TENS can be used at the end of pregnancy, to help alleviate the pains associated with early labor. Since this is only recommended with a doctor's permission, it's not a good idea to try this without checking first.

    TENS can be used for up to 12 hours and consists of two small electrodes that are placed on either side of the area where the pain originates. The higher frequencies tend to block the pain signals, while much lower frequencies will stimulate the body to produce endorphins which naturally reduce pain.

    Muscle Stimulation
    This is a very similar machine to the TENS, also using two electrodes to send electrical pulses through the body. However, the purpose is quite different. Here, the purpose is to cause the muscles to contract and the reason has nothing to do with pain relief.

    Muscle stimulation has been found to be an effective method of training the muscles. The electrical impulses mimic those of the brain to tell muscles to move. There are two main reasons to use a muscle stimulator.

    Training: Using electrical stimulation for training purposes is very useful. It allows the person to focus on specific muscle groups by choosing the right frequency and will work just those muscles, working them and conditioning them. This is particularly useful for aesthetic purposes.

    Medical: When it comes to therapeutic use, electrical pulses can be used to stimulate muscles that are not being used. This can keep them conditioned and prevents atrophying. It's a useful measure in medical situations.

    Both TENS machines and muscle stimulators have their uses, but they are very different in their reasons for being used. If you are looking for an alternative to standard pain relief, then the TENS machine is what you should be looking at. However, for the prevention of atrophied muscles and to define specific muscle groups, the muscle stimulator is the way to go.

    Now that you know the difference between these two different types of therapies, you'll be able to choose the correct one. These machines can be bought for home use and you can safely use them yourself, as long as you follow the directions and take care not to use them if you have heart problems or a pacemaker.

    Provider of a variety of high quality electronic muscle stimulators devices and TENS systems for at home use. Electrical pulse therapy has many uses and whether you need TENS for pain relief or a muscle stimulator for medical purposes or aesthetic ones, you can use them effectively.









    Having serious back pain caused me to be unable to walk, sit up or move without pain for many weeks. It has been a long ordeal that has put a serious cramp in my everyday life. During physical therapy, I was introduced to this incredibly helpful little machine called a TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) unit. I think it more as a miniature miracle worker. The machine at the physical therapist's is big and more complex than the one I bought, that is about the size of an Ipod.

    The TENS machine I bought is little but mighty. It came with electrodes, sticky pads attached to wires, that plug into the machine. They are the conductors of the electrical currents that are controlled by knobs on top of the machine. You can choose between different sensations, such as buzzing, tapping or pinging, to choose what feels best for your personal taste. The pads are affixed to the area around the source of the pain, or directly on top of it. Choose what works best for you. Having four electrodes, it contained my spinal pain nicely.

    To use the machine in detail, refer to the manual that comes along with each unit for details on frequencies, settings and others. Using the machine is considered safe, according to experts, and can be used for a long or short session, depending upon your needs. I kept mine on an hour, once a day, which did the trick for me. Now that I am feeling better, I use it here and there, on no regular schedule.

    Though the TENS unit is helpful, it doesn't cure the pain. It just distracts your body from feeling the pain with other stimulation. When you're really hurting, that sure does come in handy. It also can help to release endorphins, or the chemicals that make your mood happier. That is an added bonus, in my opinion.

    If you are suffering from pain and sick of taking a bunch of medicines alone, research TENS units online. Many physical therapy websites have them for sale. The stronger units require a doctor's prescription, but the less fancy ones usually don't. Look around. They are battery operated, but some have A/C adaptors. Compare models and try it out. If you have a physical therapist, inquire about getting one to them, and get their advice.

    With time and the correct aids, your pain will hopefully decrease soon, and life will be much better again. I've been there and understand what it's like to be in agonizing back pain. Don't suffer passively, help recovery along by learning all you can about your condition, and try one of these great little units. Chances are, it will provide you the pain relief it did for me. Good luck and good health.

    Carolyn McFann is a scientific and nature illustrator, who owns Two Purring Cats Design Studio, which can be seen at:http://www.cafepress.com/twopurringcats . Educated at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York, Carolyn is a seasoned, well-traveled artist, writer and photographer. She has lived and worked in Cancun, Mexico, among other interesting professional assignments in other countries. Clients include nature parks, museums, scientists, corporations and private owners. She has been the subject of tv interviews, articles for newspapers and other popular media venues.

    Carolyn McFann - EzineArticles Expert Author






    The TENS machine has now become a popular option for people who wish to relieve the pain that they are feeling, especially those who suffer from persistent or chronic pain. Although there have been many studies carried out as to the effective ness of this machine in which some it concludes that they do seem to help alleviate pain for some people, but in others it does not. Therefore further research does need to be carried out to clarify the role of this machine in modern day medicine and its effectiveness.

    It however seems the TENS machine does seem popular in helping to deal with various painful conditions and the popularity of the machine would certainly imply that seem effective in helping to reduce pain that people are feeling. However, the amount of pain relief that is provided by the machine is likely to vary from patient to patient, even those who are being treated for the same condition.

    A TENS (Transcutaneous which means “through the skin”) machine works by sending small electrical pulses through the body via electrodes placed on the skin. It is thought that TENS machine affects the way that pain signals are sent to the brain. All pain signals that the brain receives are sent via the nerves and the spine of a person’s body and therefore if the pain signals can be blocked then the brain is likely to receive fewer signals from where the pain source originates from, which results in the patient feeling less pain.

    It is thought that a TENS machine works in two ways. Firstly, when the machine is set on a high pulse rate of 90-130Hz it will trigger the “pain gate” to close and this in turn is thought to block the pain nerve path to the brain and this seems to be the normal use for this machine. However, if the machine was set on a low pulse rate say 2-5Hz it will stimulate the patients body into making its own pain easing chemicals called endorphins. They act in a similar way to morphine by blocking the pain signals to the brain.

    Normally a TENS machine is mainly used by someone to help reduce pain they are suffering from problems in muscles, joints or nerves rather than for chest, head or abdominal pains. One of the benefits that many people are finding from using such a machine is that unlike taking medication there are virtually no side effects. However, it must be stressed that certain people such as those who are not the sure what the cause of pain is or it has not been diagnosed by a doctor, a pregnant woman (unless it has the doctor has specifically advised its use), people with pacemakers and people who suffer from epilepsy or certain forms of heart disease.

    A TENS machine is best used only on the advice of your doctor or other health professional. This machine is certainly not suitable to deal with all types of pain or all types of conditions. Remember at all times when you are using this machine to not only follow the doctors instructions, but also those provided by the manufacturer of the machine.

    Kerris Samson a work from home mum now residing in Spain and who has spent a vast amount of researching the different ways for relieving pain. If you would like to know more please visit http://www.relievepainfast.com







    Do you have constant back pain and don't know how to relieve it? Well, try a Tens Unit. I have constant back pain, and I do the ice pack for twenty minutes and then a heating pad for twenty minutes. At times that is all I need, but if it doesn't help I use a Tens Unit, especially when I have a pinched nerve or my back is just hurting from over doing it.

    TENS stand for Transcutaneous Electrical Never Stimulation. The TENS unit sends electrical pulses through the skin to the nerves that are hurting.

    I use my TENS unit on pinched nerves and also for herniated disk. It helps. It is simple to hook up and turn on to the strength of the electrical pulses you want. The unit comes with lead wires and patches you stick to your back. You place the patch on the area that is bothering you and hook the electrodes to the patches, and then plug the lead wires into the unit. You can adjust the strength you want.

    I feel a TENS unit is more effective that taking pain medicine. You can put the unit on as long as you want and it won't harm you. Just remember the battery will run out, so keep a well charged one on hand. I have run my unit two days on one battery.

    The unit is great for sore muscles too. After a good workout, a hot shower, and then the TENS unit, I feel like a new person.
    This unit is not recommended for children and will not help on central organs.

    Be careful when wearing your unit, the wires hang out and they can get caught on something and pull the wires out of your unit or pull the patches off your back. Make sure you turn the unit off before you take the patches off or to rearrange them. If you don't you can get shocked.

    So if you have constant backache and don't know what to do about it, ask your doctor about the TENS unit. Most insurance companies will cover most or all of the expense of one.

    Well, it is time to hook myself up to my TENS unit and relax.







    TENS is a contemporary, non-pharmaceutical pain relief treatment. The word "TENS" is actually an acronym for Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator.
     
    Its full name can be a little bit misleading, since many people associate "electrical" with shock and shock therapy. In reality, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulator treatment, which is delivered through the use of a TENS unit, delivers a mild pulsing sensation, not shock.
     
    TENS units are devices which deliver low levels of electrical currents topically (through the skin.) The device creates a series of pulsing sensations. The frequency and intensity of the pulses are controlled through knobs and/or buttons. The electrical pulses are delivered from the device to the skin through the use of electrodes. These electrodes are connected by wire to the TENS unit and applied to the skin, directly over the place where the pain relief is needed.
     
    Depending on the nature of the injury or illness, doctors and therapists may start patients on a very low frequency and intensity of pulses. They may gradually increase that level if the patient is comfortable and the condition warrants it. Some units can actually be controlled by the patient, who can adjust the level him/herself to a level that is comfortable and provides the most benefit.
     
    The length of the treatment itself often depends on the nature of the injury/illness. A typical course of treatment for acute pain (i.e. post-op pain or accident injury) lasts for 6-8 weeks, with two to three sessions per week. Individual sessions may last for ten to twenty minutes, and may be adjusted depending on the effectiveness of the treatment and the progress of healing. TENS pain relief treatment for chronic pain (i.e. MS, arthritis) may be delivered on an ongoing and as-needed basis.
     
    This therapy may be prescribed to alleviate pain from a range of illnesses or injuries. TENS therapy may be prescribed for treatment of both chronic (pain that is recurrent, such as pain from osteoarthritis) and acute pain (pain that is the result of an injury that hasn't healed completely.) It has been used to treat tissue and muscle damage (i.e. from a car accident or sports injury), pain resulting from surgery, strains (i.e. neck, back), tendinitis, arthritis and more.
     
    There is conflicting information on the effectiveness of TENS pain relief treatment. Research has only been conducted on a few specific types of pain, and in most of these cases has been shown to be moderately to highly effective. Effectiveness usually depends upon the nature of the illness/injury, and the overall health and fitness of the individual patient.
     
    TENS therapy has become a fairly routine form of treatment for pain and rehabilitation after an accident or operation. A majority of patients who receive TENS therapy report at least a small level of pain relief. Many find the treatment very effective, and most physical therapists agree that it may significantly shorten the duration of healing. It is also an excellent alternative to drug treatments, especially when used on a regular basis during recovery.
     
    TENS units are found in two basic types. They may be found in the form of a home device, which patients can use in their own homes as needed (or prescribed) rather than requiring a doctor's or therapist's visit. These units typically deliver lower levels of electricity and pre-programmed programs of treatment.
     
    The other type of TENS unit is more complex. It usually has the potential to deliver higher electricity levels than home units, and therefore must be administered under the supervision of a doctor or therapist.

    Jenny Schweyer is a freelance writer from the Pacific Northwest.

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