Author: Lovro Markovic1, Barbara Wagner1, Richard Crevenna2
1 Department of Physical Medicine, Rehabilitation and Occupational Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Waehringer Guertel 18-20, 1090, Vienna, Austria.
2 Department of Physical Medicine, Rehabilitation and Occupational Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Waehringer Guertel 18-20, 1090, Vienna, Austria. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Conference/Journal: Wien Klin Wochenschr
Date published: 2022 Apr 1
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.1007/s00508-022-02020-3. , Word Count: 244
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a chronic degenerative disease of multiple joints with a rising prevalence. Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy may provide a cost-effective, noninvasive, and safe therapeutic modality with growing popularity and use in physical medicine and rehabilitation. The purpose of this study was to synthesize the current knowledge on the use of PEMF in OA.
A systematic review of systematic reviews was performed. The PubMed, Embase, PEDro and Web of Science databases were searched based on a predetermined protocol.
Overall, 69 studies were identified. After removing the duplicates and then screening title, abstract and full text, 10 studies were included in the final analysis. All studies focused on knee OA, and four studies also reported on cervical, two on hand, and one on ankle OA. In terms of the level of evidence and bias, most studies were of low or medium quality. Most concurrence was observed for pain reduction, with other endpoints such as stiffness or physical function showing a greater variability in outcomes.
The PEMF therapy appears to be effective in the short term to relieve pain and improve function in patients with OA. The existing studies used very heterogeneous treatment schemes, mostly with low sample sizes and suboptimal study designs, from which no sufficient proof of efficacy can be derived. A catalogue of measures to improve the quality of future studies has been drawn up.
Keywords: Arthrosis; Magnetic field therapy; PEMF; Umbrella review.
PMID: 35362792 DOI: 10.1007/s00508-022-02020-3