Can electrotherapy help pain after knee surgery?
Knee replacement surgery has become a very popular procedure in the United States, with an estimated 800k procedures performed each year, and that figure growing each year.
As surgical techniques improve, so do patient outcomes. About 90% of knee replacements last 15 years or longer, according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.
The downside, however, is the moderate to severe post-operative pain, which can often last several weeks*
With the risks of opioid abuse and the limits of pharmaceutical alternatives, the use of bioelectronics is seeing a new surge of interest.
In a 2017 meta-analysis of 39 randomized clinical trials with 2,391 patients, researchers looked to see which, if any, non-pharmacological interventions were effective at reducing opioid consumption post total knee arthroplasty.
The most common interventions were passive motion, preoperative exercise, cryotherapy, electrotherapy, and acupuncture.
Among these treatments, only electrotherapy was shown with moderate certainty to reduce the use of opioids.
The evidence showed changes in pain severity at 1,2, and 6 months, leading the researchers to conclude that electrotherapy might be considered as an effective nonpharmacological intervention for long-term pain relief.
Electromedical Technologies, the manufacturer of the FDA Cleared WellnessPro Plus ®, has a device that gives you over 1 million frequencies tailored for the relief of chronic, intractable pain and as an adjunctive treatment of post-surgical or post-traumatic acute pain. Find out more by visiting product page.
* – Beswick AD, Wylde V, Gooberman-Hill R, Blom A, Dieppe P. What proportion of patients report long-term pain after total hip or knee replacement for osteoarthritis? a systematic review of prospective studies in unselected patients. BMJ Open. 2012;2(1):e000435-e000435.