Localized pulsed magnetic fields for tendonitis therapy

Biomed Sci Instrum. 2006;42:428-33.


Energy medicine has existed for centuries in some parts of the world, but in recent years, western health care practitioners have taken a heightened interest in these therapies. Treatment by use of pulsed magnetic fields (PMF) is currently being explored in both chronic and inflammatory diseases such as cancer, epilepsy, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, and tendinitis. In the U.S., PMFs have already been approved for use in treatment of bone fractures in humans and clinical trials have been conducted for lower back pain. This study presents a summary of the therapeutic potential of a localized PMF treatment for tendinitis using the Softpulse III system. This system has been used to accelerate wound healing and soft tissue swelling. It generates a specific PMF that induces an electrical field within the tendon. This induced electrical field is thought to influence the healing process by affecting the inflammatory cells that line the tendon sheath. In this study, we have used an established model of tendinitis along with a validated method for appraising edema and gait (Achilles' Functional Index), to test the hypothesis that the proposed PMF signal is effective in reducing the indicators of acute tendinitis injury. These experiments were approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. Our findings suggest a role for the treatment of soft tissue injury using the Softpulse III therapeutic device. The symbolic stand point of PMF treatments is to push the need for a revolutionary leap, from the more dominant pharmaceutical and surgical interventions, to the advanced applications of non-invasive therapies that would minimize the medicinal risk of side effects, and eliminate the risk of complicated drug interactions.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Edema / diagnosis*
  • Edema / etiology
  • Edema / prevention & control*
  • Electric Stimulation Therapy / methods*
  • Female
  • Gait*
  • Magnetics / therapeutic use*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Recovery of Function / physiology
  • Tendinopathy / complications
  • Tendinopathy / diagnosis*
  • Tendinopathy / physiopathology
  • Tendinopathy / therapy*
  • Treatment Outcome