Electrotherapy is a physical therapeutic treatment where electrical stimulation is applied to nerves and muscle-motor fibers via electrodes placed on the skin. Modalities that are commonly used in
electrotherapy are:

  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve
  • Stimulation (TENS)
  • Interferential Current (IFC)

IFC is mainly a form of TENS. It modulates a higher frequency current (4000-5000 Hz) that penetrates the tissue more deeply than regular TENS unit (200-400Hz), with less user discomfort. At the same time IFC uses modulation that prevents the nervous system from accommodation to the continuous mode of TENS thus improving duration of pain relief. Two basic modes of relieving pain with TENS and IFC are:

    1. Continuous (high frequency)
    When the Pulse Rate is set at 60-100 pulses per second pain relief is achieved through the “gate control theory”. The sensation produced with this setting can be described as a “tingling” in the skin and muscles between the electrodes. At this frequency the unit produces an electrical signal that is stronger than the pain signal produced by the body. Because the signal is perceived as stronger, it effectively blocks the pain signal from travelling along nerves to the brain.

    2. Burst (low frequency)
    When the Pulse Rate is set below 10 pulses per second. It produces visible muscle twitching. The body reacts to this type of stimulation by releasing endorphins and encephalins (pain killing chemicals) that act as a chemical nerve block, effectively reducing pain. Electrotherapy is used for:

  • Relaxation of muscle spasm
  • Prevention and retardation of disuse atrophy
  • Increase of local blood circulation
  • Muscle rehabilitation
  • Maintaining and increasing joint range of motion
  • Management of chronic pain
  • Post-traumatic pain
  • Post-surgical acute pain
  • Wound healing
  • pressure and venous stasis ulcers
  • fibromyalgia
  • acute and chronic edema/swelling
  • urine incontinence
  • diabetic peripheral neuropathy

Contact Info

1750 Steeles Ave, W. Unit 8
Concord, Ontario  L4K 2L7