Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for acute pain

Deirdre M. Walsh, Tracey E. Howe, Mark I. Johnson, Kathleen A. Sluka

    Research output: Non-textual formWeb publication/site

    101 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Background Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) is a non-pharmacological agent, based on delivering low voltage electrical currents to the skin. TENS is used for the treatment of a variety of pain conditions. Objectives To assess the analgesic effectiveness of TENS for acute pain in adults to see if it had any clear analgesic effect in its own right. Search strategy The following databases were searched: Cochrane Pain, Palliative and Supportive CareGroup Specialised Register; the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, CENTRAL (in The Cochrane Lbirary); MEDLINE; EMBASE; CINAHL; AMED; PEDro; OTseeker; OpenSIGLE; and, reference lists of included studies. The most recent search was undertaken in August 2008. Selection criteria Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of adults with acute pain (less than 12 weeks) were included if they examined TENS given as a sole treatment and assessed pain with subjective pain scales. Studies were eligible if they compared TENS to placebo TENS, no treatment controls, pharmacological interventions or non-pharmacological interventions. Studies on experimental pain, case reports, clinical observations, letters, abstracts or reviews were excluded. Studies on TENS and labour pain, pain due to dental procedures and primary dysmenorrhoea were excluded. Studies where TENS was given with another treatment as part of the formal study design were also excluded. No restrictions were made regarding language. Data collection analysis Two authors independently assessed trial eligibility and extracted data. Data were extracted on the following: types of participants and pain condition, study design and methods, treatment parameters, adverse effects, and outcome measures. Study authors were contacted for additional information if necessary. Main results Of 1479 studies identified in the search, 132 were identified as relevant. Of these, 116 were excluded; the vast majority of these were excluded due to TENS being given with another treatment. Four studies were categorised as awaiting classification as the information provided in the full text failed to clarify their eligibility. Twelve RCTs involving 919 participants at entry were included. The types of acute pain conditions included procedural pain, e. g. cervical laser treatment, venipuncture, screening flexible sigmoidoscopy and non-procedural pain, e. g. postpartum uterine contractions, rib fractures. It was not possible to perform a meta-analysis due to insufficient data. Authors' conclusions Due to insufficient extractable data in the studies included in this review, we are unable to make any definitive conclusions about the effectiveness of TENS as an isolated treatment for acute pain in adults.
    LanguageEnglish
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009

    Fingerprint

    Transcutaneous Electric Nerve Stimulation
    Acute Pain
    Pain
    Therapeutics
    Analgesics
    Randomized Controlled Trials
    Labor Pain
    Rib Fractures
    Sigmoidoscopy
    Uterine Contraction
    Dysmenorrhea
    Phlebotomy
    Neuralgia
    MEDLINE
    Postpartum Period
    Patient Selection
    Meta-Analysis
    Tooth
    Lasers
    Language

    Cite this

    Walsh, D. M. (Author), Howe, T. E. (Author), Johnson, M. I. (Author), & Sluka, K. A. (Author). (2009). Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for acute pain. Web publication/site https://doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD006142.pub2
    Walsh, Deirdre M. (Author) ; Howe, Tracey E. (Author) ; Johnson, Mark I. (Author) ; Sluka, Kathleen A. (Author). / Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for acute pain. [Web publication/site].
    @misc{00ea35c4eb07410ea1ed4fbc07dfb802,
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    abstract = "Background Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) is a non-pharmacological agent, based on delivering low voltage electrical currents to the skin. TENS is used for the treatment of a variety of pain conditions. Objectives To assess the analgesic effectiveness of TENS for acute pain in adults to see if it had any clear analgesic effect in its own right. Search strategy The following databases were searched: Cochrane Pain, Palliative and Supportive CareGroup Specialised Register; the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, CENTRAL (in The Cochrane Lbirary); MEDLINE; EMBASE; CINAHL; AMED; PEDro; OTseeker; OpenSIGLE; and, reference lists of included studies. The most recent search was undertaken in August 2008. Selection criteria Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of adults with acute pain (less than 12 weeks) were included if they examined TENS given as a sole treatment and assessed pain with subjective pain scales. Studies were eligible if they compared TENS to placebo TENS, no treatment controls, pharmacological interventions or non-pharmacological interventions. Studies on experimental pain, case reports, clinical observations, letters, abstracts or reviews were excluded. Studies on TENS and labour pain, pain due to dental procedures and primary dysmenorrhoea were excluded. Studies where TENS was given with another treatment as part of the formal study design were also excluded. No restrictions were made regarding language. Data collection analysis Two authors independently assessed trial eligibility and extracted data. Data were extracted on the following: types of participants and pain condition, study design and methods, treatment parameters, adverse effects, and outcome measures. Study authors were contacted for additional information if necessary. Main results Of 1479 studies identified in the search, 132 were identified as relevant. Of these, 116 were excluded; the vast majority of these were excluded due to TENS being given with another treatment. Four studies were categorised as awaiting classification as the information provided in the full text failed to clarify their eligibility. Twelve RCTs involving 919 participants at entry were included. The types of acute pain conditions included procedural pain, e. g. cervical laser treatment, venipuncture, screening flexible sigmoidoscopy and non-procedural pain, e. g. postpartum uterine contractions, rib fractures. It was not possible to perform a meta-analysis due to insufficient data. Authors' conclusions Due to insufficient extractable data in the studies included in this review, we are unable to make any definitive conclusions about the effectiveness of TENS as an isolated treatment for acute pain in adults.",
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    Walsh, DM, Howe, TE, Johnson, MI & Sluka, KA, Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for acute pain, 2009, Web publication/site. https://doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD006142.pub2
    Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for acute pain. Walsh, Deirdre M. (Author); Howe, Tracey E. (Author); Johnson, Mark I. (Author); Sluka, Kathleen A. (Author). 2009.

    Research output: Non-textual formWeb publication/site

    TY - ADVS

    T1 - Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for acute pain

    AU - Walsh, Deirdre M.

    AU - Howe, Tracey E.

    AU - Johnson, Mark I.

    AU - Sluka, Kathleen A.

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    N2 - Background Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) is a non-pharmacological agent, based on delivering low voltage electrical currents to the skin. TENS is used for the treatment of a variety of pain conditions. Objectives To assess the analgesic effectiveness of TENS for acute pain in adults to see if it had any clear analgesic effect in its own right. Search strategy The following databases were searched: Cochrane Pain, Palliative and Supportive CareGroup Specialised Register; the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, CENTRAL (in The Cochrane Lbirary); MEDLINE; EMBASE; CINAHL; AMED; PEDro; OTseeker; OpenSIGLE; and, reference lists of included studies. The most recent search was undertaken in August 2008. Selection criteria Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of adults with acute pain (less than 12 weeks) were included if they examined TENS given as a sole treatment and assessed pain with subjective pain scales. Studies were eligible if they compared TENS to placebo TENS, no treatment controls, pharmacological interventions or non-pharmacological interventions. Studies on experimental pain, case reports, clinical observations, letters, abstracts or reviews were excluded. Studies on TENS and labour pain, pain due to dental procedures and primary dysmenorrhoea were excluded. Studies where TENS was given with another treatment as part of the formal study design were also excluded. No restrictions were made regarding language. Data collection analysis Two authors independently assessed trial eligibility and extracted data. Data were extracted on the following: types of participants and pain condition, study design and methods, treatment parameters, adverse effects, and outcome measures. Study authors were contacted for additional information if necessary. Main results Of 1479 studies identified in the search, 132 were identified as relevant. Of these, 116 were excluded; the vast majority of these were excluded due to TENS being given with another treatment. Four studies were categorised as awaiting classification as the information provided in the full text failed to clarify their eligibility. Twelve RCTs involving 919 participants at entry were included. The types of acute pain conditions included procedural pain, e. g. cervical laser treatment, venipuncture, screening flexible sigmoidoscopy and non-procedural pain, e. g. postpartum uterine contractions, rib fractures. It was not possible to perform a meta-analysis due to insufficient data. Authors' conclusions Due to insufficient extractable data in the studies included in this review, we are unable to make any definitive conclusions about the effectiveness of TENS as an isolated treatment for acute pain in adults.

    AB - Background Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) is a non-pharmacological agent, based on delivering low voltage electrical currents to the skin. TENS is used for the treatment of a variety of pain conditions. Objectives To assess the analgesic effectiveness of TENS for acute pain in adults to see if it had any clear analgesic effect in its own right. Search strategy The following databases were searched: Cochrane Pain, Palliative and Supportive CareGroup Specialised Register; the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, CENTRAL (in The Cochrane Lbirary); MEDLINE; EMBASE; CINAHL; AMED; PEDro; OTseeker; OpenSIGLE; and, reference lists of included studies. The most recent search was undertaken in August 2008. Selection criteria Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of adults with acute pain (less than 12 weeks) were included if they examined TENS given as a sole treatment and assessed pain with subjective pain scales. Studies were eligible if they compared TENS to placebo TENS, no treatment controls, pharmacological interventions or non-pharmacological interventions. Studies on experimental pain, case reports, clinical observations, letters, abstracts or reviews were excluded. Studies on TENS and labour pain, pain due to dental procedures and primary dysmenorrhoea were excluded. Studies where TENS was given with another treatment as part of the formal study design were also excluded. No restrictions were made regarding language. Data collection analysis Two authors independently assessed trial eligibility and extracted data. Data were extracted on the following: types of participants and pain condition, study design and methods, treatment parameters, adverse effects, and outcome measures. Study authors were contacted for additional information if necessary. Main results Of 1479 studies identified in the search, 132 were identified as relevant. Of these, 116 were excluded; the vast majority of these were excluded due to TENS being given with another treatment. Four studies were categorised as awaiting classification as the information provided in the full text failed to clarify their eligibility. Twelve RCTs involving 919 participants at entry were included. The types of acute pain conditions included procedural pain, e. g. cervical laser treatment, venipuncture, screening flexible sigmoidoscopy and non-procedural pain, e. g. postpartum uterine contractions, rib fractures. It was not possible to perform a meta-analysis due to insufficient data. Authors' conclusions Due to insufficient extractable data in the studies included in this review, we are unable to make any definitive conclusions about the effectiveness of TENS as an isolated treatment for acute pain in adults.

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    Walsh DM (Author), Howe TE (Author), Johnson MI (Author), Sluka KA (Author). Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for acute pain 2009. https://doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD006142.pub2