Purpose: Chronic pain is a widespread and debilitating condition, encountered by physicians in a variety of practice settings. Although many pharmacologic and behavioral strategies exist for the management of this condition, treatment is often unsatisfactory. Scrambler Therapy is a novel, non-invasive pain modifying technique that utilizes trans-cutaneous electrical stimulation of pain fibers with the intent of re-organizing maladaptive signaling pathways. This review was conducted to further evaluate what is known regarding the mechanisms and mechanics of Scrambler Therapy and to investigate the preliminary data pertaining to the efficacy of this treatment modality.
Methods: The PubMed/Medline, SCOPUS, EMBASE, and Google Scholar databases were searched for all articles published on Scrambler Therapy prior to November 2015. All case studies and clinical trials were evaluated and reported in a descriptive manner.
Results: To date, 20 reports, of varying scientific quality, have been published regarding this device; all but one small study, published only as an abstract, provided results that appear positive.
Conclusion: The positive findings from preliminary studies with Scrambler Therapy support that this device provides benefit for patients with refractory pain syndromes. Larger, randomized studies are required to further evaluate the efficacy of this approach.
Keywords: Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy; Chronic pain; Pain; Scrambler Therapy.