Treatment of chronic wounds by means of electric and electromagnetic fields. Part 2. Value of FES parameters for pressure sore treatment

Med Biol Eng Comput. 1993 May;31(3):213-20. doi: 10.1007/BF02458039.


Subjects with spinal cord injury are often distressed by pressure sores, which usually appear after prolonged pressure (wheelchair, bed) across the soft tissue which has already lost sensibility and has diminished microcirculation. The healing ability and its dynamics depend on the state of the subject's overall health. Consequently, evaluation of a particular treatment requires careful consideration of as many as possible of the parameters relevant to healing and an adequate criterion for assessing the state of the pressure sore. Bearing in mind these two circumstances, the results of a multicentre clinical study are analysed. The aim of the study was to test two hypotheses: first that healing is faster when sores are also treated by electric currents (ECs) (in addition to conventional treatment); and secondly that there exist differences in the efficiency of the treatment if direct or low-frequency pulsed currents (FES parameters) are applied. The data analysed show that pressure sores are likely to heal twice as fast when treated with low-frequency pulsed currents. EC seems to improve the healing rate in cases where the natural healing mechanisms of the body are not sufficient (chronic wounds, older subjects).

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Chronic Disease
  • Electric Stimulation Therapy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Pressure Ulcer / etiology
  • Pressure Ulcer / therapy*
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / complications
  • Wound Healing / physiology