Low-energy high-frequency pulsed electromagnetic therapy for acute whiplash injuries

D. F. Nolan, K. Moore, M. Codd, C. Barry, P. O´Connor and R. J. Coughlan, Mater Misericordiae Hospital, Ireland

The standard treatment for acute whiplash injuries (soft collar and analgesia) is frequently unsuccessful. Pulsed electromagnetic therapy (PEMT) has been shown to have pro-healing and anti-inflammatory effects. This study examines the effect of PEMT on the acute whiplash syndrome. One-half of the 40 patients enrolled in the study received active PEMT collars. The other half received a facsimile (placebo). All patients were given instructions to wear the collar for eight hours a day at home and were advised to mobilise their necks. At 2 and 4 weeks the actively treated group had significantly improved (p less than 0.05) in terms of pain (visual analogue scale). By chance, movement scores for the PEMT group were significantly worse upon entering the study than the control group (p less than 0.05). At 12 weeks, the PEMT group had shown provably better results in the management of the acute whiplash injury = Whiplash and magnetic therapy than the placebo control group.

Conclusion: PEMT is safe for home use. This study suggests that PEMT has a beneficial effect in the management of acute whiplash injuries.

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