Pulsed Magnetic Field Therapy… How Does It Work ?
By Dr. D. C. Laycock, Ph.D. Med. Eng. MBES, MIPEM
All living cells within the body possess potentials between the inner and outer membrane of the cell, which, under normal healthy circumstances, are fixed. Different cells, e.g. Muscle cells and Nerve cells, have different potentials of about -70 mV respectively. When cells are damaged, these potentials change such that the balance across the membrane changes, causing the attraction of positive sodium ions into the cell and negative trace elements and proteins out of the cell. The net result is that liquid is attracted into the interstitial area and swelling or edema ensues. The application of pulsed magnetic fields has, through research findings, been shown to help the body to restore normal potentials at an accelerated rate, thus aiding the healing of most wounds and reducing swelling faster. The most effective frequencies found by researchers so far, are very low frequency pulses of a 50Hz base. These, if gradually increased to 25 pulses per second for time periods of 600 seconds (10 minutes), condition the damaged tissue to aid the natural healing process.
PAIN REDUCTION is another area in which pulsed electromagnetic therapy has been shown to be very effective. Pain signals are transmitted along nerve cells to pre-synaptic terminals. At these terminals, channels in the cell alter due to a movement of ions. The membrane potential changes, causing the release of a chemical transmitter from a synaptic vesicle contained within the membrane. The pain signal is chemically transferred across the synaptic gap to chemical receptors on the post synaptic nerve cell. This all happens in about 1/2000th of a second, as the synaptic gap is only 20 to 50 n.-meter wide. As the pain signal, in chemical form, approaches the post synaptic cell, the membrane changes and the signal is transferred. If we look at the voltages across the synaptic membrane then, under no pain conditions, the level is about -70 mV. When the pain signal approaches, the membrane potential increases to approximately +30 mV, allowing a sodium flow. This in turn triggers the synaptic vesicle to release the chemical transmitter and so transfer the pain signal across the synaptic gap or cleft. After the transmission, the voltage reduces back to its normal quiescent level until the next pain signal arrives.
The application of pulsed magnetism to painful sites causes the membrane to be lowered to a hyper-polarization level of about -90 mV. When a pain signal is detected, the voltage must now be raised to a relatively higher level in order to fire the synaptic vesicles.
Since the average change of potential required to reach the trigger voltage of nearly +30 mV is +100 mV, the required change is too great and only +10 mV is attained. This voltage is generally too low to cause the synaptic vesicle to release the chemical transmitter and hence the pain signal is blocked. The most effective frequencies that have been observed from research in order to cause the above changes to membrane potentials, are a base frequency of 200Hz and pulse rate settings of between 5 and 25Hz.
Source: Lecture abstract of 28-01-1995, Dr. D. C. Laycock, Ph.D. Med. Eng. MBES, MIPEM, B.Ed. (Hons Phys. Sc.). Consultant Clinical Engineer, Westville Associates and Consultants (UK).
Beneficial Effects of Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields
Bioelectric Research Center, Columbia University, Riverdale, New York 10463.
Selective control of cell function by applying specifically configured, weak, time-varying magnetic fields has added a new, exciting dimension to biology and medicine. Field parameters for therapeutic, pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMFs) were designed to induce voltages similar to those produced, normally, during dynamic mechanical deformation of connective tissues. As a result, a wide variety of challenging musculoskeletal disorders have been treated successfully over the past two decades. More than a quarter million patients with chronically ununited fractures have benefitted, worldwide, from this surgically non-invasive method, without risk, discomfort, or the high costs of operative repair. Many of the athermal bioresponses, at the cellular and subcellular levels, have been identified and found appropriate to correct or modify the pathologic processes for which PEMFs have been used. Not only is efficacy supported by these basic studies but by a number of double-blind trials. As understanding of mechanisms expands, specific requirements for field energetics are being defined and the range of treatable ills broadened. These include nerve regeneration, wound healing, graft behavior, diabetes, and myocardial and cerebral ischemia (heart attack and stroke), among other conditions. Preliminary data even suggest possible benefits in controlling malignancy.
Source: J Cell Biochem 1993 Apr;51(4):387-93
A.A. Pilla: "State of the Art in Electromagnetic Therapeutics: soft Tissue
Applications," Second World Congress for Electricity and Magnetism in
Biology and Medicine, June 8-13, 1997, Bologna, Italy. - This review article
points out that treatment with pulsed electromagnetic fields manifests its
effect relatively rapidly in injuries involving the connective tissue and muscles.
Magnet Therapy for Fibromyalgia
Over the past decade, chronic pain sufferers have become avid consumers of magnet therapy. Unfortunately, doctors and consumers alike know very little about the clinical effects of these products.
In a new study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine , researchers from the University of Virginia describe the largest and most rigorous clinical trial to date of a magnet therapy used to treat patients with chronic pain. Results were obtained from 94 patients with fibromyalgia, a syndrome affecting 2 percent of the general population and responsible for widespread pain, fatigue, fitful sleep and anxiety in sufferers.
Researchers randomly separated participants into five treatment groups to test the effects of magnetic sleep pads on several measures of participants' pain. Ratings of subjects' pain were measured over six months using the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire, pain intensity ratings, tender point counts, and tender point pain intensity.
One group slept on pads that administered whole body therapy with a low magnetic field. A second group received magnet therapy that varied in intensity. A third group slept on the pads but received no magnetic therapy while a fourth group were instructed to stick to their normal pain treatment regimens with no magnetic therapy.
Ann Gill Taylor, R.N., from the University of Virginia, says, "We did find a statistically significant difference in pain intensity reduction for one of the active magnet pad groups. The two groups that slept on pads with active magnets generally showed the greatest improvements in outcome scores of pain intensity level, number of tender points on the body and functional status after six months."
Alan P. Alfano, M.D., from the University of Virginia, says, "The results tell us maybe this therapy works, and that maybe more research is justified." However, he cautions, "You can't draw final conclusions from only one study."
Source: Ivanhoe Newswire, Feb. 27, 2001
Analgesic and behavioral effects of a 100 microT specific pulsed magnetic
field on mice
Therapeutic effects of peripheral magnetic stimulation on myofascial pain syndrome
Electromagnetic field treatment of pain in patients with lumbar radiculopathy or whiplash
Interventional neurophysiology for pain control: transcranial magnetic stimulation
Pain relief by low-intensity frequency-modulated mm waves acting on acupuncture points
Static magnetic field therapy for pain in the abdomen and genitals
Response of pain to static magnetic fields in postpolio patients
Exposure to oscillating magnetic fields influences sensitivity to electrical stimuli
Efficacy of static magnetic field therapy in chronic pelvic pain
Effect of magnets on chronic pelvic pain
Effects of static magnets on chronic knee pain and physical function
Extensive reorganization of primary somatosensory cortex in chronic back pain patients
Pulsed high frequency electromagnetic therapy for persistent neck pain
Summary of a 12-month double-blind, clinical test of magnetic mattress pads
Use of magnetic therapy for chronic pain
Analgesic and behavioral effects of a 100 microT specific pulsed extremely low frequency magnetic field on control and morphine treated CF-1 mice.
Shupak NM, Hensel JM, Cross-Mellor SK, Kavaliers M, Prato FS, Thomas AW.
Bioelectromagnetics, Lawson Health Research Institute, Department of Nuclear Medicine, St. Joseph's Health Care, 268 Grosvenor Street, London, Ont. N6A 4V2, Canada.
Diverse studies have shown that magnetic fields can affect behavioral and physiological functions. Previously, we have shown that sinusoidal extremely low frequency magnetic fields and specific pulsed magnetic fields (Cnps) can produce alterations in the analgesia-related behavior of the land snail. Here, we have extended these studies to show an induction of analgesia in mice equivalent to a moderate dose of morphine (5 mg/kg), and the effect of both Cnp exposure and morphine injection on some open-field activity. Cnp exposure was found to prolong the response latency to a nociceptive thermal stimulus (hot plate). Cnp+morphine offset the increased movement activity found with morphine alone. These results suggest that pulsed magnetic fields can induce analgesic behavior in mice without the side effects often associated with opiates like morphine.
Neurosci Lett. 2004 Jan 2;354(1):30-3.
Therapeutic effects of peripheral repetitive magnetic stimulation on myofascial pain syndrome.
Smania N, Corato E, Fiaschi A, Pietropoli P, Aglioti SM, Tinazzi M.
Centro di Rieducazione Funzionale Policlinico G.B. Rossi, Verona, Italy. email@example.com
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate short- and medium-term effects of peripheral repetitive magnetic stimulation (rMS) on myofascial pain.
METHODS: Eighteen patients who presented with myofascial trigger points (TPs) at the level of the superior trapezius were separated into two groups according to a restricted randomization scheme. Group 1 (n=9) underwent treatment with rMS that consisted of a total of 10 sessions, each lasting 20min, in which 4000 magnetic stimuli were administered in 5s trains at 20Hz at the TP. Group 2 (n=9) received a placebo treatment that consisted of the application of a non-functioning ultrasound therapy device to the TP. Patients were evaluated before treatment, at the end of treatment, and again 1 week and 1 month after the conclusion of the treatment. Clinical evaluation included parameters for measuring pain levels (VAS, NPDVAS and algometry), the myofascial TP characteristics and the range of cervical movement (ROM).
RESULTS: The rMS group showed a significant improvement in VAS, NPDVAS, algometry, as well as in the characteristics of the TP after conclusion of treatment. Improvements in the ROM were also present in rotation and controlateral bending. This improvement persisted after 1 month. On the other hand, the placebo group did not show any significant improvement in the tests considered.
CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study show that peripheral rMS may have positive short- and medium-term therapeutic effects on myofascial pain.
Clin Neurophysiol. 2003 Feb;114(2):350-8.
Evaluation of electromagnetic fields in the treatment of pain in patients with lumbar radiculopathy or the whiplash syndrome.
Thuile Ch, Walzl M.
International Society of Energy Medicine, Vienna, Austria.
Back pain and the whiplash syndrome are very common diseases involving tremendous costs and extensive medical effort. A quick and effective reduction of symptoms, especially pain, is required. In two prospective randomized studies, patients with either lumbar radiculopathy in the segments L5/S1 or the whiplash syndrome were investigated. Inclusion criteria were as follows: either clinically verified painful lumbar radiculopathy in the segments L5/S1 and a Lasegue's sign of 30 degrees (or more), or typical signs of the whiplash syndrome such as painful restriction of rotation and flexion/extension. Exclusion criteria were prolapsed intervertebral discs, systemic neurological diseases, epilepsy, and pregnancy. A total of 100 patients with lumbar radiculopathy and 92 with the whiplash syndrome were selected and entered in the study following a 1:1 ratio. Both groups (magnetic field treatment and controls) received standard medication consisting of diclofenac and tizanidine, while the magnetic field was only applied in group 1, twice a day, for a period of two weeks. In patients suffering from radiculopathy, the average time until pain relief and painless walking was 8.2 +/- 0.5 days in the magnetic field group, and 11.7 +/- 0.5 days in controls (p < 0.04). In patients with the whiplash syndrome, pain was measured on a ten-point scale. Pain in the head was on average 4.6 before and 2.1 after treatment in those receiving magnetic field treatment, and 4.2/3.5 in controls. Neck pain was on average 6.3/1.9 as opposed to 5.3/4.6, and pain in the shoulder/arm was 2.4/0.8 as opposed to 2.8/2.2 (p < 0.03 for all regions). Hence, magnetic fields appear to have a considerable and statistically significant potential for reducing pain in cases of lumbar radiculopathy and the whiplash syndrome.
Interventional neurophysiology for pain control: duration of pain relief following repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation of the motor cortex.
Lefaucheur JP, Drouot X, Nguyen JP.
Service de physiologie-explorations fonctionnelles, hopital Henri-Mondor, Inserm U421, faculte de medecine, 94010 Creteil, France. firstname.lastname@example.org
The chronic electrical stimulation of a motor cortical area corresponding to a painful region of the body, by means of surgically-implanted epidural electrodes is a validated therapeutical strategy to control medication-resistant neurogenic pain. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) permits to stimulate non-invasively and precisely the motor cortex. We applied a 20-min session of rTMS of the motor cortex at 10 Hz using a 'real' or a 'sham' coil in a series of 14 patients with intractable pain due to thalamic stroke or trigeminal neuropathy. We studied the effects of rTMS on pain level assessed on a 0-10 visual analogue scale from day 1 to day 12 following the rTMS session. A significant pain decrease was observed up to 8 days after the 'real' rTMS session. This study shows that a transient pain relief can be induced in patients suffering from chronic neurogenic pain during about the week that follows a 20-min session of 10 Hz-rTMS applied over the motor cortex.
Neurophysiol Clin. 2001 Aug;31(4):247-52.
Pain relief by low-intensity frequency-modulated millimeter waves acting on the acupuncture points.
Samosiuk IZ, Kulikovich IuN, Tamarova ZA, Samosiuk NI, Kazhanova AK.
Analgetic effect of low-intensive frequency-modulated millimetric waves (MW) was studied in mice with formalin induced nociceptive behavior reaction (licking of defeat hindpaw). MW were applied to the acupoint E 36 of the defeat hindpaw. The following MW were used: 60 GHz (1) and 118 GHz (2) which were modulated by 4 Hz; noise MW within the range of 42-95 GHz (3) and 90-140 GHz (4) which were modulated in accidental order by frequencies 1-60 Hz; combinations of fixed frequencies with noise - 60 GHz + noise 42-95 GHz (5) and 118 GHz + noise 90-140 GHz (6). All used MW combinations suppressed licking of the defeat hindpaw and increased duration of sleep and eating. The strongest analgesia was achieved in series 1-3 (42.4-69.7%), the weakest in series 6 and 4 of the experiment (12.2-19.7%).
Vopr Kurortol Fizioter Lech Fiz Kult. 2000 Jul-Aug;(4):7-11.
Static magnetic field therapy for pain in the abdomen and genitals.
Holcomb RR; Worthington WB; McCullough BA; McLean MJ
Department of Neurology; Vanderbilt University Medical Center;, Nashville, Tennessee, USA.
Two adolescents with debilitating, medication-resistant, chronic pain of the low back and abdomen with intermittent pain of the genitalia were diagnosed with intervertebral disk disease at spinal cord levels that correlated with their signs. Both patients had undergone multiple evaluations by physicians of different specialties and both underwent appendectomy without relief of their pain. The history of the onset of pain was important in determining the affected levels. The pain of both individuals was mimicked and localized by percussion of the vertebral spines at the level of disk protrusion. This maneuver and careful review of the history were important in making the correct diagnosis in each case. In both patients, treatment with novel magnetic devices provided rapid relief that was sustained for more than 2 years. These cases highlight the need for careful evaluation and correct diagnosis of abdominal and genital pain in young patients to avoid costly and unnecessary medical intervention and the stigma of painful debility.
Pediatr Neurol 2000 Sep;23(3):261.
Response of pain to static magnetic fields in postpolio patients: a double-blind pilot study.
Vallbona C, Hazlewood CF, Jurida G.
Department of Family and Community Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA.
OBJECTIVE: To determine if the chronic pain frequently presented by postpolio patients can be relieved by application of magnetic fields applied directly over an identified pain trigger point.
DESIGN: Double-blind randomized clinical trial.
SETTING: The postpolio clinic of a large rehabilitation hospital.
PATIENTS: Fifty patients with diagnosed postpolio syndrome who reported muscular or arthritic-like pain.
INTERVENTION: Application of active or placebo 300 to 500 Gauss magnetic devices to the affected area for 45 minutes.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Score on the McGill Pain Questionnaire.
RESULTS: Patients who received the active device experienced an average pain score decrease of 4.4 +/- 3.1 (p < .0001) on a 10-point scale. Those with the placebo devices experienced a decrease of 1.1 +/- 1.6 points (p < .005). The proportion of patients in the active-device group who reported a pain score decrease greater than the average placebo effect was 76%, compared with 19% in the placebo-device group (p < .0001).
CONCLUSIONS: The application of a device delivering static magnetic fields of 300 to 500 Gauss over a pain trigger point results in significant and prompt relief of pain in postpolio subjects.
Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 1997 Nov;78(11):1200-3.
Exposure to oscillating magnetic fields influences sensitivity to electrical stimuli. II. Experiments on humans.
Papi F, Ghione S, Rosa C, Del Seppia C, Luschi P.
Dipartimento di Scienze del Comportamento Animale e dell'Uomo, Universita di Pisa, Italy.
To assess the effect of a magnetic treatment on pain perception, we compared the sensory threshold in 18 healthy volunteers. We determined the threshold by noninvasive electrical stimulation of the tooth pulp and skin before and after exposure to an altered magnetic field of low intensity and to a sham treatment. Five different parameters were recorded: the sensory and pain thresholds for the tooth and the sensory, pain, and tolerance thresholds for the skin. Two hours of exposure to a weak, oscillating magnetic field induced a significant decrease in three parameters (dental sensory and cutaneous pain and tolerance thresholds), whereas the other two parameters showed a similar tendency. When the same subjects were exposed to a sham treatment, only marginal, nonsignificant variations in all parameters were observed. These results represent the first piece of evidence that weak alterations of the magnetic field may induce hyperalgesia in humans.
Efficacy of static magnetic field therapy in chronic pelvic pain: a double-blind pilot study.
Brown CS, Ling FW, Wan JY, Pilla AA.
Department of Pharmacy Practice and Pharmacoeconomics, University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, Memphis, USA. email@example.com
OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to determine the efficacy of static magnetic field therapy for the treatment of chronic pelvic pain (CPP) by measuring changes in pain relief and disability.
STUDY DESIGN: Thirty-two patients with CPP completed 2 weeks and 19 patients completed 4 weeks of randomized double-blind placebo-controlled treatment at a gynecology clinic. Active (500 G) or placebo magnets were applied to abdominal trigger points for 24 hour per day. The McGill Pain Questionnaire, Pain Disability Index, and Clinical Global Impressions Scale were outcome measures.
RESULTS: Patients receiving active magnets who completed 4 weeks of double-blind treatment had significantly lower Pain Disability Index (P <.05), Clinical Global Impressions-Severity (P <.05), and Clinical Global Impressions-Improvement (P <.01) scores than those receiving placebo magnets, but were more likely to correctly identify their treatment (P <.05).
CONCLUSION: SMF therapy significantly improves disability and may reduce pain when active magnets are worn continuously for 4 weeks in patients with CPP, but blinding efficacy is compromised.
Am J Obstet Gynecol 2002 Dec;187(6):1581-7
Effect of magnets on chronic pelvic pain.
Brown CS; Parker N; Ling F; Wan J
University of Tennessee, Memphis, TN, USA
OBJECTIVE: Magnetic therapy has been used to manage a variety of chronic pain syndromes. Chronic pelvic pain (CPP) is a common disorder that does not always respond to conventional treatments. The primary aim of this study was to determine if applying magnets to abdominal trigger points would significantly relieve pain.
METHODS: Patients with CPP between 18 and 50 years of age were enrolled in a 2-week, double blind, placebo-controlled study with an optional 2-week blinded continuation phase. Women who completed single-blind treatment were randomized to receive either active or placebo 500 Gauss magnets for 24 hours per day. The McGill Pain Questionnaire (MPQ) and the Pain Disability Index (PDI) were used.
RESULTS: Fourteen subjects completed the 2-week study, and eight subjects completed the continuation phase. There was no significant treatment effect using repeated measures analysis. Of the eight treatment extenders, 60% with active magnets compared with 33% with placebo magnets had 50% reductions in MPQ and PDI scores. A power analysis revealed that 16 subjects were necessary to show a significant effect after 4 weeks of treatment. Blinding was more effective in the placebo group than in the active magnet group and at 2 weeks than at 4 weeks.
CONCLUSIONS: This first controlled study of magnetic therapy for CPP suggests that pain relief is related to duration of exposure. The ongoing trial will report on the effect of longer exposure periods and blinding efficacy with a larger sample.
Obstet Gynecol 2000 Apr 1;95(4 Suppi 1):529.
Effects of static magnets on chronic knee pain and physical function: a double-blind study.
Hinman MR, Ford J, Heyl H.
Department of Physical Therapy, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, USA.
CONTEXT: Static magnets have become an increasingly popular alternative therapy for individuals with musculoskeletal pain despite limited scientific evidence to support their efficacy or safety.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the effects of static magnets on the pain and functional limitations associated with chronic knee pain due to degenerative joint disease.
DESIGN: Double-blind, randomized, controlled clinical trial.
SETTING: Pretests and posttests were conducted in an academic health science center.
PARTICIPANTS: Forty-three ambulatory subjects with chronic pain in 1 or both knee joints who were recruited from outpatient clinics or who volunteered to participate.
INTERVENTION: Subjects wore pads containing magnets or placebos over their painful knee joints for 2 weeks.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Self-administered ratings of pain and physical function using the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) and a timed 15-m (50-ft) walk.
RESULTS: Multivariate analysis of covariance revealed significantly greater improvements in the group wearing magnets (P=.002). Univariate analyses indicated that comparative changes in self-rated pain and physical function (P=.002 and .001, respectively) were greater than changes in gait speed (P=.042).
CONCLUSIONS: The application of static magnets over painful knee joints appears to reduce pain and enhance functional movement. However, further study is needed to determine the physiological mechanisms responsible for this analgesic effect.
Altern Ther Health Med. 2002 Jul-Aug;8(4):50-5.
Extensive reorganization of primary somatosensory cortex in chronic back pain patients.
Flor H, Braun C, Elbert T, Birbaumer N.
Department of Psychology, Humboldt-University, Berlin, Germany. firstname.lastname@example.org
The hypothesis of reorganization of the primary somatosensory cortex in states of chronic pain was assessed in 10 low back pain patients and nine matched healthy controls. Intracutaneous electric stimuli were applied to the left back and index finger at a standard, a non-painful and a painful intensity. Magnetic fields were recorded by a 37-channel BTi biomagnetometer from the hemisphere contralateral to the site of stimulation. The power of the early evoked magnetic field (< 100 ms) elicited by painful stimulation of the painful back in very chronic patients was elevated relative to that elicited by painful back stimulation of healthy controls and showed a linear increase with chronicity (r = 0.74). The maximum activity elicited in primary somatosensory cortex was shifted more medially in the very chronic back pain subjects. These data suggest that chronic pain is accompanied by cortical reorganization and may serve an important function in the persistence of the pain experience.
Neurosci Lett. 1997 Mar 7;224(1):5-8.
Pulsed high frequency (27MHz) electromagnetic therapy for persistent neck pain. A double blind, placebo-controlled study of 20 patients.
Foley-Nolan D, Barry C, Coughlan RJ, O'Connor P, Roden D.
Mater Misericordiae Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.
In the majority of patients with neck pain, symptoms will resolve spontaneously or quite quickly in response to therapy. However, some patients' symptoms persist for a long period, irrespective of therapy. In this study, 20 patients with persistent (greater than 8 weeks) neck pain were enrolled in a double blind, placebo-controlled trial of low energy, pulsed electromagnetic therapy (PEMT)--a treatment previously shown to be effective in soft tissue injuries. For the first 3-week period, group A (10 patients) received active PEMT units while group B (10 patients) received facsimile placebo units. After 3 weeks, both pain (visual analogue scale (P less than .023) and range of movement (P less than .002) had improved in the group on active treatment compared to the controls. After the second 3 weeks, during which both groups used active units, there were significant improvements in observed scores for pain and range of movement in both groups. PEMT, in the form described, can be used at home easily in the treatment of patients with neck pain. It is frequently successful and without side effects.
Orthopedics. 1990 Apr;13(4):445-51.
Exposure to pulsed electromagnetic fields enhanced the speed and degree of peripheral nerve regeneration twofold. Effects of a Soviet Polyus-1 low-frequency magnet therapy device used to administer approximately 10 mT for approximately 10 minutes in patients with optic nerve atrophy. Patients underwent 10-15 sessions per course. Results showed that vision acuity in patients with low acuity values (below 0.04 diopters) improved in 50 percent of cases. It was also found that the treatment improved ocular blood flow in cases of optic nerve atrophy. Optimal benefits were experienced after 10 therapy sessions.
H. Ito C.A. Bassett, Effect of Weak, Pulsing Electromagnetic Fields on Neural
L.V. Zobina, Effectiveness of Magnetotherapy in Optic Nerve Atrophy. A Preliminary Study, Vestn Oftalmol, 106(5),
September-October 1990, p. 54-57.
Pulsed magnetic field treatment (20-30 minutes per day) and whole body alternating current magnetic field treatment (30 minutes per day) to be effective therapies for post-herpetic neuralgia in older patients. Pulsed magnetic field treatment consisted of 0.6-T (6-kG) samarium/cobalt magnets surrounded spiral coils generating a maximum 0.1-T pulse. Pads were pasted on the sensory areas innervated the dorsal root of the spinal cord where there was scar-association pain. Stimuli were delivered at 280 V and 8 Hz. Alternating current magnetic field treatment involved a treatment bed consisting of 19 electrodes containing paired coils and with a maximum magnetic flux density around the electrodes of 0.08 T.C. Kusaka, Pulse Magnetic Treatment and Whole-Body, Alternating Current Magnetic Treatment for Post-Herpetic Neuralgia.
Using PEMF to control refractory neuropathic pain in humans
Title: Pulsed magnetic field therapy in refractory neuropathic pain secondary to peripheral neuropathy: electrodiagnostic parameters--pilot study
Weintraub MI, Cole SP.
New York Medical College
CONTEXT: Neuropathic pain (NP) from peripheral neuropathy (PN) arises from ectopic firing of unmyelinated C-fibers with accumulation of sodium and calcium channels. Because pulsed electromagnetic fields (PEMF) safely induce extremely low frequency (ELF) quasirectangular currents that can depolarize, repolarize, and hyperpolarize neurons, it was hypothesized that directing this energy into the sole of one foot could potentially modulate neuropathic pain. OBJECTIVE: To determine if 9 consecutive 1-h treatments in physician's office (excluding weekends) of a pulsed signal therapy can reduce NP scores in refractory feet with PN. DESIGN/SETTING/PATIENTS: 24 consecutive patients with refractory and symptomatic PN from diabetes, chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP), pernicious anemia, mercury poisoning, paraneoplastic syndrome, tarsal tunnel, and idiopathic sensory neuropathy were enrolled in this nonplacebo pilot study. The most symptomatic foot received therapy. Primary endpoints were comparison of VAS scores at the end of 9 days and the end of 30 days follow-up compared to baseline pain scores. Additionally, Patients' Global Impression of Change (PGIC) questionnaire was tabulated describing response to treatment. Subgroup analysis of nerve conduction scores, quantified sensory testing (QST), and serial examination changes were also tabulated. Subgroup classification of pain (Serlin) was utilized to determine if there were disproportionate responses. INTERVENTION: Noninvasive pulsed signal therapy generates a unidirectional quasirectangular waveform with strength about 20 gauss and a frequency about 30 Hz into the soles of the feet for 9 consecutive 1-h treatments (excluding weekends). The most symptomatic foot of each patient was treated. RESULTS: All 24 feet completed 9 days of treatment. 15/24 completed follow-up (62%) with mean pain scores decreasing 21% from baseline to end of treatment (P=0.19) but with 49% reduction of pain scores from baseline to end of follow-up (P<0.01). Of this group, self-reported PGIC was improved 67% (n=10) and no change was 33% (n=5). An intent-to-treat analysis based on all 24 feet demonstrated a 19% reduction in pain scores from baseline to end of treatment (P=0.10) and a 37% decrease from baseline to end of follow-up (P<0.01). Subgroup analysis revealed 5 patients with mild pain with nonsignificant reduction at end of follow-up. Of the 19 feet with moderate to severe pain, there was a 28% reduction from baseline to end of treatment (P<0.05) and a 39% decrease from baseline to end of follow-up (P<0.01). Benefit was better in those patients with axonal changes and advanced CPT baseline scores. The clinical examination did not change. There were no adverse events or safety issues. CONCLUSIONS: These pilot data demonstrate that directing PEMF to refractory feet can provide unexpected shortterm analgesic effects in more than 50% of individuals. The role of placebo is not known and was not tested. The precise mechanism is unclear yet suggests that severe and advanced cases are more magnetically sensitive. Future studies are needed with randomized placebo-controlled design and longer treatment periods. [Return to Table]
Neurorehabil Neural Repair. 2004 Mar;18(1):42-6
Study of static magnets to treat fibromyalgia patients
Title: Static Magnetic Fields for Treatment of Fibromyalgia: A Randomized Controlled Trial
Alan P. Alfano, MD, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Virginia
Ann Gill Taylor, MS, EdD, RN, FAAN, Center of Complementary Therapies University of Virginia
Pamela A. Foresman, BA, Center of Complementary and Alternative Therapies University of Virginia
Philomena R. Dunkl, PhD, Center of Complementary and Alternative Therapies University of Virginia
Geneviève G. McConnell, PhD-C, DO, Physical Medicine, University of Virginia Health System
Mark R. Conaway, PhD, Department of Health Evaluation Sciences, University of Virginia
George T. Gillies, PhD, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Virginia
Objective: To test effectiveness of static magnetic fields of two different configurations, produced by magnetic sleep pads, as adjunctive therapies in decreasing patient pain perception and improving functional status in individuals with fibromyalgia.
Design: Randomized, placebo-controlled, 6-month trial conducted from November 1997 through December 1998.
Setting and subjects: Adults who met the 1990 American College of Rheumatology criteria for fibromyalgia were recruited through clinical referral and media announcements and evaluated at a university-based clinic.
Interventions: Subjects in Functional Pad A group used a pad for 6 months that provided whole-body exposure to a low, uniform static magnetic field of negative polarity. Subjects in the Functional Pad B group used a pad for 6 months that exposed them to a low static magnetic field that varied spatially and in polarity. Subjects in two Sham groups used pads that were identical in appearance and texture to the functional pads but contained inactive magnets; these groups were combined for analysis. Subjects in the Usual Care group continued with their established treatment regimens.
Outcome measures: Primary outcomes were the change scores at 6 months in the following measures: functional status (Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire), pain intensity ratings, tender point count, and a tender point pain intensity score.
Results: There was a significant difference among groups in pain intensity ratings (p = 0.03), with Functional Pad A group showing the greatest reduction from baseline at 6 months. All four groups showed a decline in number of tender points, but differences among the groups were not significant (p = 0.72). The functional pad groups showed the largest decline in total tender point pain intensity, but overall differences were not significant (p = 0.25). Improvement in functional status was greatest in the functional pad groups, but differences among groups were not significant (p = 0.23).
Conclusions: Although the functional pad groups showed improvements in functional status, pain intensity level, tender point count, and tender point intensity after 6 months of treatment, with the exception of pain intensity level these improvements did not differ significantly from changes in the Sham group or in the Usual Care group. [Return to Table]
Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. Feb 2001, Vol. 7, No. 1, Pages 53-64
Chronic pain causes sleep disturbances
By Rita Cowan,Ph.D., RN
A common but usually undiagnosed and untreated symptom of chronic pain is sleep disturbance. When people suffer with pain, their sleep quality is often disrupted, making the sensation of pain worse. The sleep state is required for humans to rejuvenate and repair the body. When sleep problems occur, the body is hampered in performing its important functions. In "healthy" people, this is a problem; for those who suffer with pain, it becomes especially difficult.
A position paper from the important pain conference at the National Institute of Health strongly recommended that health care providers who treat people with pain take special note to monitor their patients' sleep patterns and any disturbances.
When evaluating sleep disturbances, it is necessary to identify what type the patient experiences:
Difficulty falling asleep,
Difficulty maintaining sleep,
Early morning arousal. It is not unusual for many people with pain to suffer with all three types of sleep disturbances.
For people with pain, the most common reason for sleep problems is the pain itself. Many patients feel exhausted and, while they may eventually be able to fall asleep, they are awakened throughout the night due to their pain.
SCIENTIFIC, MEDICAL AND CLINICAL STUDIES
ON THE EFFECT OF
PULSATING ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS
ALSO KNOWN AS
PULSATING ENERGY RESONANCE THERAPY
SUMMARY OF PAPERS AVAILABLE AT THE
" Institut für Energie-Medizinische Systeme e.V." - EMS Berlin international
INSTITUTE OF ENERGY MEDICINE IN BERLIN - GERMANY.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
Bekhterev's Disease - refer also to "Rheumatic Diseases"
Burns and Sunburn
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Coronary Heart Disease
Gastritis, Gastroenteritis and Peptic Ulcer
Gastroenterology - Intestinal Disease, Gastric Mucosa Injuries
Headache - Migraine
Influenza, Viral Infections
Injuries and Injury Rehabilitation
Menstrual and Menopausal Disorders
Myogelosis, Ischialgia, Lumbago and Muscle Strain
Necrosis of the Bones
Ovarian Inflammations and Cysts
Pancreatitis with PERT
Peripheral Occlusive Vascular Disease
Rheumatic Diseases - See also Arthritis, Arthrosis, Fibromyalgia.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Splayed Foot or Talipes Equinus
Sports Medicine - Diseases of the Motor Apparatus
Ulcers of the Skin
Urinary Tract Disorders, Bedwetting
More than 10,000 scientific papers have been published about the effect of PEMF. Many of the studies have been carried out in Russia and Eastern Europe, which is the centre of the international research on Pulsating Electro-Magnetic Fields (PEMF).
Many original publications of these studies are in the Russian language only and have been presented and published at Eastern European conferences. Russian research teams have been using low frequency Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields similar to the systems studied and endorsed by EMS (Institut für Energie-Medizinische Systeme e.V. - Institute of Energy-Medical Systems) in Berlin, Germany. Some of the research team are well known to EMS. We have therefore used the terminology PERTH for some of these studies.
Some of the enclosed studies were presented at the Second World Congress for Electricity and Magnetism in Biology and Medicine, June 1997, Bologna, Italy. Several of the studies were published in Western Medical Journals such as the Lancet and on the PubMed website.
The double blind, placebo controlled study of the "Therapeutic Efficiency Of Pulsating Energy Resonance Therapy (PERTH) In Patients With Vertebral Diseases" by Assoc. Prof. Marin Marinkev, MD, Assoc. Prof. Todor Kraev, MD, Dr. Stojan Kamenov and Dr. Antoaneta Georgieva of Physical Medicine, Higher Medical Institute, Plovdiv is enclosed in full.
Also enclosed is the summary of a study of the effect of PERTH on blood parameters by Prof. Dr. G. Schauf, Dr. Med. Schara, Dr. Med. Sell, Bergische Universität Wuppertal, Fachb. Medizintechnik, published 12/1994.
The overall effect of PERTH is best summarized by the foreword from the book "Energy Medicine" by Josef A. Plattner and Dr. Reinhard Werner, MD and by 2 abstracts of papers by C.A. Bassett; Bioelectric Research Centre, Columbia University, New York, of his publication "Fundamental and practical aspects of therapeutic uses of pulsed electromagnetic fields (PEMFs)" and "Beneficial effects of electromagnetic fields".
The terminology PERTH has widely been used in Germany for fields which are similar to the bodies own electric force fields, created when muscle tissue and bone structures are exercised. Dr. Bassett and American literature describes the same fields as PEMFs.
General Effect of PEMF or PERTH
Foreword from the book "Energy Medicine" by Josef A. Plattner and
Prof. Dr. Reinhard Werner, MD, PhD.
Pulsating electromagnetic fields can be a blessing and a curse to human life. They definitely have a large influence on all forms of life on earth.
There are more than 10,000 scientific publications plus numerous books written about the effects of electromagnetic fields on the human body. More than 1,000 dissertations have been written about the subject and more than 300 Professors are doing research in this wide field of science, which includes Biology, Physiology, Biophysics, Genetic Science and Medicine. In the last few years it has become evident that electromagnetic fields can be used for many therapeutic applications. Systems have been developed on the basis of scientific research, which use electromagnetic fields to stimulate the body's own biological energy production. This inductive stimulation of the body's own energy has become a new medical specialty resulting in the term "Energy Medicine". Energy Medicine explains many phenomena, like the effect of the psyche on our health, as well as healing through the mind or even spontaneous healing.
Past literature was written by specialists for other specialists and for a small groups of interested physicians. Most doctors know little about these alternative medical therapies due to a lack of communication between biologists, physicists and medical personnel.
Energy Medicine is however an important component in Russian space medicine. Eastern Europe is the centre of scientific research and wide spread medical application of this modern therapy. In one institute in Sofia, Bulgaria alone there have been more than 100,000 successful treatments carried out during 1993 - 1996.
Recently PERTH became accepted in Germany. Following a period of close scrutiny by traditional medicine, many progressive doctors now use this form of therapy, which has been developed by modern medical technology using sophisticated computer supported systems.
The individual person has the largest advantage from using PERTH. It allows many people to take the initiative and be more responsive in preventing a health crisis. It is best to use PERTH on a regular basis, as prevention before any disease occurs.
New Energy Medicinal Diagnostic Systems can recognise the formation of a pathological condition in its early stages, much earlier than any other diagnostic method. This is a big step towards avoiding disease.
In the last several years we have been involved in the research and development of the medical uses of optimised PEMF. We are closely linked with several international universities. The audience response to countless lectures and seminars has made us realise that the time is ripe for educated people to take charge of their own personal well-being. The era of prevention of health, rather than cure of disease, has started.
Bassett CA. Orthopedic Surgery, Columbia University, NY. Fundamental and practical
aspects of therapeutic uses of pulsed electromagnetic fields (PEMFs).
The beneficial therapeutic effects of selected low-energy, time-varying magnetic fields, called PEMFs, have been documented with since 1973. Initially, this form of energy was used mainly as salvage for patients with long-standing nonunions. Many of these individuals were candidates for amputation. Their resistance to the usual forms of surgical treatment, including bone grafting, served as a reasonable control in judging the efficacy of this new therapeutic method. More recently, the biological effectiveness of this approach in augmenting bone healing has been confirmed by several highly significant double blind and controlled studies. Furthermore, double blind evidence of therapeutic effects in other clinical disorders has emerged. These data, coupled with well-controlled laboratory findings on pertinent mechanisms of action, have begun to place PEMFs on a therapeutic par with surgically invasive methods but at considerably less risk and cost.
Over the past decade, the number of publications has risen exponentially. They now include textbooks, speciality journals, regular reviews by government agencies, in addition to individual articles, appearing in the wide spectrum of scientific sources. In a recent review of the frontiers of biomedical engineering Dr. Garfield chose PEMFs from among other biomedical engineering efforts as an example of a rapidly emerging discipline.
This review focuses on the principles and practice behind the therapeutic use of "PEMFs". This term is restricted to time-varying magnetic field characteristics that induce voltage waveform patterns in bone similar to those resulting from mechanical deformation. These asymmetric, broad-band pulses affect a number of biologic processes athermally. Many of these processes appear to have the ability to modify selected pathologic states in the musculoskeletal and other systems. PubMed.
C.A. Bassett; "Beneficial effects of electromagnetic fields".
Selective control of cell function by applying specifically configured, weak, time-varying electromagnetic fields has added a new, exciting dimension to biology and medicine. Field parameters for therapeutic, pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMFs) were designed to induce voltages similar to those produced, normally, during dynamic mechanical deformation of connective tissues. As a result, a wide variety of challenging musculoskeletal disorders have been treated successfully over the past two decades. More than a quarter million patients with chronically ununited fractures have benefited, worldwide, from this surgically non-invasive method, without risk, discomfort, or the high costs of operative repair. Not only is efficacy supported by these basic studies but by a number of double blind trials. As understanding of mechanisms expands, specific requirements for field energetics are being defined and the range of treatable ills broadened. These include nerve regeneration, wound healing, graft behaviour, diabetes, and myocardial and cerebral ischemia (heart attack and stroke), among other conditions. Preliminary data even suggest possible benefits in controlling malignancy. PMID: 8496242 PubMed
Cossarizza et al.: 'Effects of PEMF on the Proliferation of Lymphocytes from
AIDS-Patients, HIV Sero-Positive Subjects, and Seronegative Drug Users,' Department
of Disease, University of Modena, Italy, J. Bio-electrics (USA) 1989. - The
effect of PEMF on the replication of mitogen-stimulated lymphocytes in AIDS
patients and a controlled group was investigated. It was found that cell division
remained unchanged in the group of healthy subjects. In the AIDS patient group,
an increase in active T lymphocytes was observed.
Wallach: 'Electromagnetic Therapy - A New Medical Discipline,' California Institutional Review Board, Canoga Park, California, 1998. - This article reviews various documented by studies, in addition to the traditional indications involving the motor system, mainly new possibilities such as supportive treatment by PEMF in the area of immunology and AIDS.
M.R. Cho et al.: 'Regulation of Electric Field-Induced Macrophage Migration by Extra cellular Matrix,' Harvard Medical School and Brigham & Women's Hospital, Boston. University of Chicago School of Medicine, Chicago. 1998. - This study has shown that phagocytes are stimulated by PEMF to much greater activity than was the case in the control group without PEMF
Rodin et al.: 'Use of Low-Intensity Eddy Magnetic Field in the treatment of Patients with Skin Lymphomas', Voen Med Zh, 317 (12), 1996, pp. 32-34
R.A. Drolet: 'Thumart Therapy: A non-Invasive Cell Regeneration Ion and Anti-Inflammatory
Therapy Using Electromagnetic Fields,' Bioelectromagnetics Society, 4th Annual
Meeting, Los Angeles. - The positive anti-inflammatory, cell-regenerating,
sedative and pain-relieving effects of PEMF are described.
V.I. Kovalchuk, et al., 'Use of Extremely Low Frequency Magnetic Fields in Clinical Practice,' Fizicheskaia Medtizina, 4 (1-2), 1994, p. 87. - The anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects of PEMF are emphasized.
R. Sandyk et al.: 'Age-Related Disruption of Circadian Rhythms: Possible Relationship to Memory Impairment and Implications for Therapy with Magnetic Fields, 'International Journal of Neuroscience, 59 (4), August 1991, pp. 259-262. - The circadian rhythm seems to be causally related to memory loss in the elderly and possibly also to Alzheimer's disease. PEMF can probably improve memory performance in elderly patients by resetting the biological clock.
R. Sandyk: 'Alzheimer's Disease: Improvement of Visual Memory and Visuoconstructive Performance by Treatment with low intensity PEMF in Picotesla intensity ' International Journal of Neuroscience, 76 (3-4), June 1994, pp. 185ff. - Two Alzheimer's patients showed a definite improvement after treatment with PEMF, especially in the visual memory and their drawing abilities. There were also improvements in other cognitive functions, in the ability of these patients to orient themselves in space, their mental/emotional condition, their ability to make social contact and their short-term memory.
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
R. Bellosei, Berget: 'Pulsating Electromagnetic Fields offer a Glimmer of Hope for Patients Suffering from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis,' Second World Congress for Electricity and Magnetism in Biology and Medicine, June 8-13, 1997, Bologna, Italy. - This investigation reports on three patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis who responded positively to with PEMF. Definite clinical improvements were observed in these patients.
T.V Golovacheva: PEMF in Complex Treatment of Cardiovascular Diseases, "mm
Waves in Medicine and Biology", 10th Russian Symposium with International
Participation, April 24-26, 1995, Moscow, pp. 29-31
V.M. Bogoliubov, L.A. Skurikhina: "Therapeutic Application of Constant
and Low-frequency Electromagnetic Fields," - this review of various studies
documented positive effects in the treatment of arterial aneurisms.
L.L. Orlow et al.: "Evaluation of Anti-anginal Effects of PEMF and Drug
Therapy on the Physical Working Capacity and Hemodynamics in Patients with
Stable Angina Pectoris," Kardiologiia, February1992. - In this study the
effect of PEMF and medication against angina pectoris and the combination therefore
was investigated on 60 patients with stable first through third degree angina.
A monotherapy (just one medication) with MDT had a good anti-anginal action
on patients with class 1-2 angina pectoris. The efficacy of the treatment increased
definitely when combined with several drugs.
T.A. Kniazeva, R. Artutiunian: "The Effect of PEMF and General Lodobromide Baths with the Presence of Molecular Iodine on the Blood Coagulation Processes and the Central Hemodynamics of Patients after an Aortocoronary Bypass," Zeitschrift fur Kur- und Physiotherapie [Journal for Cure Therapy and Physical Therapy], 1990.
L.D. Makoeva et al., "PEMF in Treating Stenocardia," Biofizika July-August, 1996, pp. 949-952. - This article reports on the use of PEMF in treatment of angina pectoris in combination with and without medication. The flow properties of the blood, the cardiac output and clinical symptoms were investigated. It was found that PEMF has a definite anti-anginal action on class 1 and 2 angina patients. With the combination with several drugs on class 3 angina patients, a stronger and better effect of the medications was observed. The incidence of heart attacks was clearly reduced.
G. Grantet al.: "Protection Against Focal Cerebral Ischemia Following
Exposure to a Pulsed Electromagnetic Field," Department of Neurosurgery,
Stanford University, California, Bioelectromagnetics 1994. - This study shows
that electromagnetic stimulation leads to more rapid healing and repair of
damage to cerebral arteries. Studies on rats have shown a positive effect of
pulsating electromagnetic fields in the treatment of strokes.
F.E. Gorbunov et al.: "The Effect of Combined Trans-cerebral Magnetic and PEMF on the Cerebral and Central Hemodynamic Status of Stroke Patients in the Early Rehabilitation Period," Vopr Kurortol Fizioter Lech Fiz Kult (3), May-June 1996, pp. 21-24. - These study results prove that treatment of apoplexy patients with PEMF in combination with a stimulus current in the early phase of rehabilitation yields the best results.
B. Baychev et al.: "Evaluating the Effect of PEMF on Vasculo-Vegetative and Motor Disorders in Stroke Patients," Kurortol-Fizioter. 27/3 1990. - Thirty-five stroke patients were examined on the basis of various clinical test methods. After 15 days of treatment with PEMF an improved blood supply in both halves of the brain and a clinical improvement especially in the area of the hemiplegia were found. Motor abilities were restored more rapidly and the tendency to spastic symptoms was definitely reduced. PEMF was tolerated very well by the patients and proved to be quite beneficial both in the acute and subacute phases after a stroke.
R. Cadossi: "Protective Effect of Electro-magnetic Field Exposure on Acute Soft Tissue Ischemic Injury," Second World Congress for Electricity and Magnetism in Biology and Medicine, June 8-13, 1997, Bologna, Italy. - Pulsating electromagnetic fields develop a protective mechanism against necrosis in acute ischemia. This experiment was proven on the brains of rats.
L.N. Budkar et al.: 'Manetolaser Therapy in Treatment of Ischemic Heart Disease
and Heart Rhythm Disorders,' Doktor Lending, 4(3), 1996, pp. 10-13.
E.M. Vasi?eva et al.:' The Effect of Low-Frequency Magnetic Field on Erythrocyte Membrane Function and on the Prostanoid Level in the Blood Plasma of Children with Parasystolic Arrhythmia,' vopr Kurortol Fizioter Lech Fiz Kult (2), March-April 1994, pp. 18-20. - This study reports on the results obtained on 23 children with parasytolic arrhythmia who experienced an improvement with PEMF in both humoral and cellular processes which are involved in the regulation of the heart rhythm.
F. Petrossi: 'The Effect f Low-Frequency Magnetic Field on Erythrocyte Membrane Function and on the Prostanoid Level in the Blood Plasma of Children with Parasytolic Arrhythmia,'
C. Wallach: "Electromagnetic Therapy. A New Medical Discipline," California
Institutional Review Board, Canoga Park, California, 1998. - This author shows
that new areas of use for PEMF are opening up and more and more biological
effects are being studies and documented by scientists. In addition to the
known broad spectrum in injuries current studies on arteriosclerosis patients
are showing a positive effect on atherosclerotic plaques.
R.T. Gor et al.: "Selective Resolution of Plaques and Treatment of Arteriosclerosis Biophysical Alteration of Cellular and Intracellular Properties," Medical Hypotheses, 7(2) February 1981, p. 217. - In this article the new possibility of treatment arteriosclerosis by PEMF is discussed. Some of the atherosclerotic plaques that have already formed can be dissolved again without injuring the vessels.
Jacobson JI, Gorman R, Yamanashi WS, Saxena BB, Clayton L.
Institute of Theoretical Physics and Advanced Studies for Biophysical Research, Perspectivism Foundation, 2006 Mainsail Cir, Jupiter, USA.
Placebo-controlled, randomised, double blind clinical study to determine the effectiveness of low-amplitude, extremely low frequency magnetic fields on patients with knee pain due to osteoarthritis. 176 patients were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 groups, the placebo group (magnet off) or the active group (magnet on). INTERVENTION: 6-minute exposure to each magnetic field signal using 8 exposure sessions for each treatment session, the number of treatment sessions totalling 8 during a 2-week period, yielded patients being exposed to uniform magnetic fields for 48 minutes per treatment session 8 times in 2 weeks. The range of magnetic field amplitudes used was from 2.74 x 10(-7) to 3.4 x 10(-8) G, with corresponding frequencies of 7.7 to 0.976 Hz. RESULTS: Reduction in pain after a treatment session was significantly (P < .001) greater in the magnet-on group (46%) compared to the magnet-off group (8%). CONCLUSION: Low-amplitude, extremely low frequency magnetic fields are safe and effective for treating patients with chronic knee pain due to osteoarthritis. PMID: 11565402 PubMed
E. Riva Sanseverino, A. Vannini, P. Castellacci: "Therapeutic effects of pulsed electromagnetic fields on joint diseases," Panminerva Medica 34(4), October-December 1992, pp. 187196. - This study characterizes PEMF as an excellent physical measure for the treatment of joint diseases. The authors of this study report that PEMF, when used correctly and repeated periodically, can stop the disease process of the effected joints, with regard to the clinical condition. The best results are achieved in the treatment of pain.
T. Zizic et al.: "The treatment of rheumatoid arthritis of the hand with pulsed electromagnetic fields," World Congress for Electricity and Magnetism in Biology and Medicine, June 1997, Bologna, Italy. - This double blind, placebo-controlled study investigates the effects of pulsating fields for a period of four weeks in the treatment of arthritis of the hand. The results show a definite clinical improvement in patients receiving magnetic field therapy in comparison with the control group without PEMF.
V.D. Grigor'eva et al.: "Therapeutic use of physical factors in complex therapy of patients with psoriatic arthritis," Vopr Kurortol Fizioter Lech Fiz Kult (6), 1995, pp. 48-51. - This study presents a review of the treatment of patients with psoriatic arthritis with low-frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields. It demonstrates a definite improvement in the clinical condition of the effected joints.
D.H. Trock et al.: "A double blind Trial of the Clinical Effects of PEMF
in Osteoarthritis," Journal of Rheumatology, 1993:20, pp. 456-460. - This
double blind randomised study with 27 patients (primary arthrosis of the knee)
is one of the most important research studies conducted in the field of PEMF.
Six clinical parameters were investigated at different times during the treatment
and an evaluation was carried out after one month. These results show a definite
improvement in clinical parameters (such as mobility) in the group treated
with PEMF in comparison with the group treated without PEMF. An important conclusion
in this study is that for more than 17 years, more than 200,000 patients have
already been treated in Eastern Europe with pulsating electromagnetic fields
in clinical trials without any mentionable side effects. Observations in Eastern
Europe on 861 patients with painful rheumatic changes have shown an improvement
in symptoms in 70-80%.
F. Pezzetti et al.: "Effect of Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Exposure of Human Chondrocytes in Vitro," University of Ferrara, Italy, November 1998. - This study investigated the influence of pulsating electromagnetic fields on cartilage cells and demonstrated a definite increase in cartilage reconstruction under the influence of PEMF.
H. Lieu et al.: "PEMF Influences Hyaline Cartilage Extracellular Matrix Composition without Affecting Molecular structure," Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 4, 1996, pp. 63-76. - This study represents and important step in scientific research into the positive effects of magnetic fields on arthrosis. It shows that PEMF influences cartilage metabolism and can prevent the degradation of glucosamine glycans. In some individual cases, cartilage mass has been regenerated.
L. Yarkiv et al.: "The use of Changeable Magnetic Field in Treatment of Osteoarthritis," European Bioelectromagnetics Association, 3rd International Congress, February 29 - March 3, 1996, Nancy, France. - This controlled study on arthrosis patients has shown a definite improvement in the disease condition of patients treated with PEMF.
D.H. Trock et al.: "The Effect of PEMF in the Treatment of Osteoarthritis of the Knee and Cervical Spine. Report of Randomised, Double blind, Placebo-controlled Trials," Journal of Rheumatology, 1994:21, pp. 1903-1911. - This study on 86 patients with arthrosis in the knee and 81 patients with arthrosis in the cervical spine has shown a definite difference between the PEMF group and the control group. The patients treated with PEMF show an improvement with a statistically significant difference in almost all clinical parameters.
The Herder Clinic in Bremen reports of four years of experience with PEMF in diseases and injuries of the supporting system and the motor system - An evaluation of 650 cases of arthrosis of the spinal column and peripheral joints found a reduction in pain in 60-70% of the cases.
K. Konrad et al.: "Therapy with PEMF in Aseptic Loosening of Total Hip
Prostheses: A Prospective Study," Budapest, Hungary, Clin. Rheumatol.,
July 1996. - PEMF was used on 24 patients with a loosened hip prosthesis. Follow-up
examinations were performed after six months and after one year, showing that
the patients treated with PEMF had experienced pain relief and a definite improvement
in hip movements. The isotope scan and ultrasonic tests confirmed these positive
W.F. Kennedy et al.: "Use of PEMF in Treatment of Loosened Hip Prostheses. A Double blind Study," Clin Orthop., January 1993 (286), pp. 198-205. - This study with 37 patients with cemented hip prostheses demonstrates that 53% of the loosened hip prostheses had fused again after six months of PEMF, whereas only 11% in the control group had a similarly positive effect.
Studies are currently carried out at three renowned German University Clinics. The studies were initiated after extremely positive preliminary.
G. Gualtieri et al.: "The Effect of PEMF Stimulation on Patients Treated of Hip Revisions with Trans-femoral Approach," Second world Congress for Electricity and Magnetism in Biology and Medicine, June 8-13, 1997, Bologna, Italy. - This double blind study investigated the effect of PEMF on patients with loosened hip prostheses. The results demonstrate an increase in bone density with a stabilising effect on the prostheses in all patients treated with PEMF, whereas only about half those in the control group showed an increase in bone density.
" D. Foley-Nolan et al.: "Low Energy High Frequency Therapy for
Persistent Neck Pain. Double blind Placebo-controlled Trial," Bioelectromagnetics
Society, 12th Annual, June 10-14, 1990, San Antonio, p. 73. - In this double
blind, placebo-controlled study, the effects of low-energy pulsating electromagnetic
electric fields on persistent back pain were investigated. Clearly positive
results were demonstrated.
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