Electrotherapy

Physical Therapy, Electromagnetic Field

What is electrotherapy
As the human body is composed on average of 60% water, it is in principle a very good conductor of electric current. Electrotherapy uses various types of electric currents to influence the function of electroconductive tissues in the human body. Namely the nerves and muscles are best treated with electricity. Connective tissues can also be beneficially affected by electrotherapy. Some currents that penetrate deep into the body may even positively influence the functions of certain inner organs (like the urinary bladder or large bowel). The currents used for healing have been carefully tested and proven to be safe and effective. We use either direct or alternating currents (of low, middle or high frequency) depending on the effect we need to achieve. Apart from the most-widely used currents described below, there are many other types and their application is up to the expertise and discretion of spa physicians and physiotherapists.

How electrotherapy helps
Electric currents change the electric features of the affected tissues, thus bringing about various healing effects: the suppression of pain, relaxation or stimulation of muscles, softening of stiff tissues, improved blood circulation, reduction of swelling, enhanced immunity, and the alleviation of inflammation. The precise effect of electrotherapy depends on the quality of the current – the modulation of its frequency or amplitude, its intensity, etc. 
 

Electrotherapy is either performed by a physiotherapist or by a trained nurse. It usually lasts a few minutes (up to 20), only the direct current needs a rather long time to act – from 30 to 60 minutes. Electrotherapy may be combined with ultrasound and is most effective if taken in a series of applications. The frequency and length of applications must be prescribed by a physician as well as the precise current type, its application method, etc. Some currents are applied by means of plate electrodes placed in humid protective sheaths onto your skin and fastened with straps, while others are better used with suction-cup, pen-like or button electrodes. The vacuum effect produced by suction cups may alternate so a micro-massage of the underlying tissue improves the circulation and flow of oxygen into it.

Advisable for:

Musculoskeletal diseases, orthopaedic and accident rehabilitation, neurological diseases, vascular problems in limbs

Not advisable for:

Metallic implants – cardiostimulators, joint replacements, screws, etc. at the current pathway, infectious diseases, fever, acute inflammation, untreated or uncontrolled hypertension, epilepsy (neck to be avoided, elsewhere possible), acute thrombosis, phlebitis, leg ulcers and other skin defects, incontinence, pregnancy, unstable diabetes, psychosis, alcohol or drug abuse, severe cardiovascular disease, malignant tumours (at the site of application, elsewhere possible) and blood disorders

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