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HomeWound Healing  
Wound Healing

Wound Healing

Polarity reversal of microcurrent reinitiates wound repair processes following plateaus in healing. Blood coagulation and thrombosis occurs in the vessel beneath the anode but not beneath the cathode. When the polarity is reversed the cathode is capable of solubilizing the clot formed beneath the anode.

(Becker R. 1988)

Electrotherapy for Acceleration of Wound Healing: Low Intensity Direct Current

Carley and Wainapel, Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Vol. 66, July 1985

Summary: 30 hospital patients with non healing ulcers were divided into two groups, one treated with conventional wound dressings and one with microcurrent stimulation at 300-700 uA. The latter group was given two two hour stimulation periods per day. After six weeks of such treatments, the group treated with microcurrents showed a 150-250% faster healing rate , with stronger scar formation, less pain and lessened infection of the treated area.

Accelerated Healing of Skin Ulcers by Electrotherapy

Wolcott, Wheeler, Hardwicke, and Rowley Southern Medical Journal, July 1969.

Summary: Researchers applied microcurrent stimulation ranging from 200-800 uA to a wide variety of wounds, using negative polarity over the lesions in the initial phase, and then alternating positive and negative electrodes every three days. The treated group showed 200-350% faster healing rates than control, with stronger tensile strength of scar tissue and antibacterial effects in infected wounds in the treated group.

Use of Low Intensity Direct Current in Management Ischemic Skin Ulcers

Gault and Gatens: Physical Therapy, Vol. 56, #3, March 1976.

Summary: 100 patients with skin ulcers were treated with microcurrent stimulation; six of them had bacterial ulcers with one side used as controls. Stimulation of 200-800 uA was applied, with negative polarity used until infection cleared, and then polarity reversed. Patients had diagnosis ranging from quadriplegia, CVA, brain tumor, peripheral vascular disease, burns, diabetes, fracture, and amputation. The lesions with patients treated with currents showed approximately twice as fast a healing rate.

Effects of Electrical Microcurrents on Regeneration Processes in Skin Wounds

Sinitsyn, Razvozva, Ortop Travmatol Protez, Feb. 1986

Summary: 68 patients with post burn and post traumatic wounds underwent treatment constant and modulated microcurrent of negative polarity of 1-10 uA/cm2 over a period of 2-20 days. Although both groups showed accelerated regeneration, the modulated electric current group showed more prolonged and marked effect. Better survival of skin grafts was demonstrated compared with untreated patients.

Bacterial inhibition by electrical activation of percutaneous silver implants.

J.A. Spadaro, S.E. Chase, and D.A. Webster:Journal of Biomedical Materials Research, Vol. 20, 565-577 (1986)

Summary: Percutaneous silver wire implants were placed in rats, and the wounds inoculated with Staphylococcus aureus to test how much infection would spread. Microcurrent stimulation was passed through the wires, with + anodal current placed into implanted silver wire, and the - cathodal electrode placed on the rat's belly as a ground. It was found that significant inhibition of infection occurred, with the most marked results at 20uA current level. "Metallic silver can be effectively and efficiently activated to elicit its anti-microbial activity by the application of microampere electrical current."


Additional Research

Rowley. B. A.. McKenna, J. M.. Chase, G. R., and Wolcott, L. E.: The influence of electrical current on an infecting microorganism in wounds. Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 238:543, 1974.
Wolcott. L. E.. Wheeler, P. C., Hardwicke. H. M.. and RowIcy. B.: Accelerated healing of skin ulcers by electrotherapy: Prelimlnary clinical results. South. Med. J. 62:795. 1969.
Wu. K. T., Go, N.. Dennis, C.. Enquist, I.. and Sawyer. er. P. N.: Effects of electric currents and interfacial potentials on wound healing. J. Surg. Res. 7:122. 1967.



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