Check Electrotherapy

Check Electrotherapy

The name may be scary, but electrical stimulation works well for some types of nerve pain. Treatments range from electrotherapy you can do at home to surgical procedures. Learn more about the approach and how it may help with pain relief.

Conditions: Nerve pain

Symptoms: Muscle weakness, burning, headache, pain, pain with movement, lower back pain, upper back pain, sharp pain, shocking pain, extreme sensitivity, loss of feeling, numbness, tingling, pins and needles

Triggers:

Treatments:

Categories: Treatment

Duration

14

Why Electricity?

When you feel nerve pain, an electrical signal is sent from a damaged nerve to your brain. Electrical stimulation for nerve pain works by sending out its own electrical impulses. These charges seem to interrupt or block the pain signals, reducing the pain you feel. Ask your doctor if electrotherapy might help you.

Prompt: Why electricity?

CTA: Learn why it works for nerve pain.

Conditions: Nerve pain

Symptoms: Muscle weakness, burning, headache, pain, pain with movement, lower back pain, upper back pain, sharp pain, shocking pain, extreme sensitivity, loss of feeling, numbness, tingling, pins and needles

Triggers:

Treatments: Electrical stimulation

Categories: Treatments

PENS for Nerve Pain

Percutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (PENS) -- also called electroacupuncture -- combines western and eastern approaches. A small device delivers painless electrical pulses to the nerves through acupuncture needles. Some studies show that PENS helps relieve nerve pain, but other studies show it does not. Ask your doctor if you should try it.

Prompt: Electroacupuncture?

CTA: Try PENS for nerve pain.

Conditions: Nerve pain

Symptoms: Muscle weakness, burning, headache, pain, pain with movement, lower back pain, upper back pain, sharp pain, shocking pain, extreme sensitivity, loss of feeling, numbness, tingling, pins and needles

Triggers:

Treatments: Electrical stimulation, PENS (percutaneous electrical nerve stimulation)

Categories: Treatments

rTMS for Nerve Pain

rTMS stands for repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation. It uses magnetic fields to send electrical impulses into the brain, blocking pain signals. While it may help some people, the effects of one session don't last long. You may need repeated sessions to see a longer lasting effect on pain. Ask your doctor if rTMS is something you should consider.

Prompt: Magnets for Pain?

CTA: Try rTMS.

Conditions: Nerve pain

Symptoms: Muscle weakness, burning, headache, pain, pain with movement, lower back pain, upper back pain, sharp pain, shocking pain, extreme sensitivity, loss of feeling, numbness, tingling, pins and needles

Triggers:

Treatments: Electrical stimulation, rTMS (repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation), TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation)

Categories: Treatments

WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on February 10, 2016

Sources

SOURCES:

Cruccu, G. European Journal of Neurology, 2007.

Dworkin, R. American Journal of Medicine, October 2009.

Freynhagen, R. BMJ, August 2009.

Gilron, I. The Lancet, Oct. 10, 2009.

Jann, M. Pharmacotherapy, 2007.

Jensen, T. The Lancet, Oct. 10, 2009.

National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke: "Peripheral Neuropathy Fact Sheet."

National Pain Foundation: "Neuropathic Pain: Medications;" "Neuropathic Pain: Injections;" and "Neuropathic Pain: Surgery."

O'Connor, A. American Journal of Medicine, October 2009.

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