• Good advice for aches, pains & injuries
bibliography*The PainScience Bibliography contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers and others sources, like a specialized blog. This page is about a single scientific paper in the bibliography, Robinson 1988.

Clinical application of electrotherapeutic modalities


Tags: devices, physical therapy, treatment, manual therapy

PainSci summary of Robinson 1988?This page is one of thousands in the bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided at the bottom of the page, as often as possible. ★★★☆☆?3-star ratings are for typical studies with no more (or less) than the usual common problems. Ratings are a highly subjective opinion, and subject to revision at any time. If you think this paper has been incorrectly rated, please let me know.

This paper is in the PainSci bibliography primarily because it was the only available American survey of the prevalence of electrotherapies (such as ultrasound and TENS) for 20 years, until Wong 2007, which showed that it’s still a very popular therapy. Another recent survey in Canada (Armijo-Olivo 2013) had similar results.

original abstractAbstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

The purposes of this survey study were 1) to determine the frequency of use of eight forms of electrical stimulation and ultrasound in clinical practice and 2) to determine the factors that influence how and when these forms of electrical stimulation are used. A survey questionnaire was distributed to 490 physical therapists in clinics affiliated with the academic programs of Ithaca College and Temple University. Forty-five percent (221) of the distributed surveys were returned. Descriptive statistics and chi-square calculations were used in the data analysis. Respondents frequently used two forms of pulsed current and rarely used two forms of alternating current. No form of electrical current was used as frequently as ultrasound. The frequency and type of electrical stimulation used depended on the availability of electrical stimulators and the adequacy of entry-level training in electrotherapy. The results of this study suggest the need for additional electrical stimulators in physical therapy clinics, training for physical therapists, and research in electrotherapy.

related content

This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights: