Electrical Muscle Stimulation

Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS), also known as neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) or electromyostimulation, is the elicitation of muscle contraction using electric impulses. EMS in a chiropractic setting is usually therapeutic and not used as a cosmetic tool. In medicine, EMS is used for pain control and rehabilitation purposes. For instance in chiropractic physical therapy, in the prevention of disuse muscle atrophy which can occur for example after musculoskeletal injuries, such as damage to bones, joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons. It may also be used to decrease muscular spasm or tight contractions which limit normal ranges of motion in the spine or other joints such as the shoulders or knees.

Electrical muscle stimulators are considered devices under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. Under this law and the agency’s regulations, the FDA is responsible for regulating the sale of all electrical muscle stimulators in the United States. Therefore, firms must comply with appropriate FDA premarket regulatory requirements before they can legally sell their stimulators. Most electrical muscle stimulators (EMS devices) that have been reviewed by FDA are intended for use in under the direction of a health care professional such as a chiropractor, doctor of osteopathy or physical therapist. If a company wants to sell EMS devices directly to consumers, the company needs to show FDA it can be used safely and effectively in that setting.

According to Wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrical_muscle_stimulation

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) certifies and releases EMS devices into two broad categories: over-the counter devices (OTC), and prescription devices. OTC devices are marketable only for muscle toning; prescription devices can only be purchased with a medical prescription for therapy and should be used under supervision of an authorized practitioner, for the following uses:

  • Relaxation of muscle spasms;
  • Prevention or retardation of disuse atrophy;
  • Increasing local blood circulation;
  • Muscle re-education;
  • Immediate post-surgical stimulation of calf muscles to prevent venous thrombosis;
  • Maintaining or increasing range of motion

You may be a candidate for electrical muscular stimulation. Our office uses EMS successfully every day to treat pain and injuries. To learn more about EMS therapy contact our office and schedule an appointment.

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