Doctors discussing PEMF therapy with patient

At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, our doctors are physiatrists — doctors who focus on pain management and increased function without surgery. Our patients are eager to improve their comfort and quality of life without “going under the knife,” and we are eager to help them achieve that goal. One of the treatment modalities we use for this purpose is Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (PEMF)  therapy. Innovative though PEMF treatments appear to be, the roots of this treatment go back thousands of years in cultures in other parts of the world. 

If you are troubled by arthritic or muscular pain, slow healing of a fracture, muscle weakness or dysfunction, PEMF may make a tremendous difference. Why not make an appointment to meet with us at one of our conveniently located offices in Nassau, Suffolk, and Queens to see if PEMF may be right for you?

The Concept Behind PEMF Treatment?

The guiding principle behind PEMF is that using safe, natural electromagnetic fields that are complementary to normal bodily functions will produce a wide range of therapeutic effects.

The first thing to understand is that electromagnetic energy is already at work in the human body. This is why we are able to use EKGs and EEGs to record, respectively, heart and brain activity.

Over the past decades, increasing attention has been paid to mitochondria, the energy-producing parts of our cells. The prevalence and strength of our mitochondria provide us with more energy for productive activity and may help us to have a longer life span. For this reason, scientists postulated that charging mitochondria (known as “the powerhouse of the cells”) would have numerous potential benefits, and they were right.

In 2007, several PEMF devices were cleared by the FDA for use in the U.S. for the treatment of conditions including bone healing, wound care, post-operative knee pain and swelling, migraine headaches with aura, and clinical depression. 

Though not yet FDA-approved to treat other musculoskeletal conditions at this time, evidence is mounting in numerous studies that PEMF is effective for broader purposes. As a matter of fact, professional athletes have been using this therapy for years to reduce muscle soreness, treat injuries, and improve performance, and NASA has used PEMF to improve cell viability and enhance the function of tissues in outer space. It is difficult to think of two better recommendations for any therapy.

Known Benefits of PEMF

Behind the idea of PEMF is the theory that low-frequency electromagnetic pulses will pass through the skin to penetrate muscles, bones, tendons, and even organs, and in doing so activate cells and stimulate natural repair processes. Though more research is presently being done, pulsed (intermittent) magnetic waves of PEMF have show promise in:

  • Reducing inflammation
  • Improving circulation and muscle function
  • Accelerating bone healing and increasing bone density
  • Oxygenating tissue
  • Alleviating back, neck, knee, and shoulder pain
  • Relieving symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis
  • Improving immune function
  • Facilitating sleep by improving Circadian rhythm

Ongoing studies and clinical trials throughout the country and the world continue to provide evidence of the efficacy of PEMF therapy.

The Difference that Makes PEMF Therapy Safe

Many of us have been taught to be wary of the dangers of electromagnetic fields in X-rays and microwaves. There are two important differences between PEMF and those other waves (known as EMFs): frequency and duration.

High-frequency EMFs are disruptive to the body because they ionize (charge) cellular atoms, altering DNA. By contrast, PEMFs, which are low frequency, are far more similar to natural frequencies, like those found in thunderstorms, and therefore have no negative impact. Moreover, because PEMF treatments are pulsed, patients only receive that low-frequency energy in short bursts, further lessening any possibility of negative impact. For these reasons, PEMF treatments are considered perfectly safe.

PEMF Therapy Is One of the Most Successful Treatments Offered at Long Island Spine

Our dedicated staff finds many uses for PEMF therapy which we often combine with other pain management and rehabilitation methods, such as musculoskeletal ultrasound, acupuncture, epidural steroid injections and radiofrequency ablation. We have found that  PEMF therapy is especially useful in reducing pain and swelling and promoting healing:

  • After  bone fractures
  • After musculoskeletal surgery
  • In cases of chronic pain conditions (e.g fibromyalgia)
  • For those with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis
  • For those with rotator cuff injuries
  • For those with many types of joint pain
  • For those recovering from muscular injuries 

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Does PEMF Therapy Really Work?

Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (PEMF) therapy has garnered increasing attention for its potential therapeutic benefits. The concept behind PEMF treatment is based on the idea that low-frequency electromagnetic pulses can stimulate natural repair processes within the body. While the use of PEMF devices has been cleared by the FDA for specific medical purposes such as bone healing, wound care, and post-operative pain, ongoing research suggests that the benefits of PEMF therapy may extend to a broader range of conditions.

Professional athletes have been using PEMF therapy to reduce muscle soreness, treat injuries, and improve performance for years. Even NASA has explored the use of PEMF to enhance the function of tissues in outer space. The evidence supporting the efficacy of PEMF therapy is continually growing through studies and clinical trials conducted worldwide.

What Are The Side Effects of PEMF?

One of the distinguishing features of PEMF therapy is its safety. Unlike high-frequency electromagnetic fields (EMFs) found in X-rays and other sources, which can ionize cellular atoms and alter DNA, PEMFs use low-frequency electromagnetic waves that closely resemble natural frequencies, such as those found in thunderstorms. This fundamental difference means that PEMF therapy does not negatively impact the body.

Furthermore, PEMF treatments are pulsed, which means that patients are exposed to low-frequency energy in short, controlled bursts. This approach further minimizes any potential for adverse effects. As a result, PEMF therapy is considered safe and well-tolerated by individuals seeking non-invasive and drug-free pain management and healing options.

How Many Sessions of PEMF Will I Need?

The number of PEMF therapy sessions required can vary depending on the individual’s specific condition and goals. While some patients may experience immediate relief after just a few sessions, others with chronic or more complex conditions may require a more extended treatment plan. During your initial consultation at Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, our experienced physiatrists will evaluate your condition and develop a personalized treatment plan tailored to your needs.

Factors influencing the recommended number of PEMF sessions include the type and severity of your condition, your overall health, and your response to the therapy. In many cases, PEMF therapy is used in combination with other pain management and rehabilitation methods to optimize results. Our dedicated staff will work closely with you to ensure you receive the right number of sessions to achieve your desired outcomes and enhance your quality of life without the need for surgical intervention.

Contact Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine Today

If you are suffering prolonged pain, whether constant or intermittent, or are finding that healing from surgery or musculoskeletal injury is taking too long and interfering with your normal routine, Long Island Spine is the place to call. We are well-prepared to relieve your symptoms with PEMF therapy and other nonsurgical options and have an outstanding record of success. Just take a look at the testimonials of our grateful patients on our website! Remember, the sooner you get in touch with us, the sooner our highly capable, compassionate staff can help you heal.