ISSN: 2544-4395
Physiotherapy Quarterly
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4/2021
vol. 29
 
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abstract:
Review paper

Electrical stimulation: then and now. Applications and limitations

Aneta Demidas
1

1.
Department of Massage and Physical Therapy, Faculty of Physiotherapy, Wroclaw University of Health and Sport Sciences, Wroclaw, Poland
Physiother Quart. 2021;29(4):81–86
Online publish date: 2021/12/14
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Electrical stimulation is a branch of physical therapy that applies low and medium frequency currents to stimulate the human body. The effects of electrical impulses on human beings have been observed since antiquity. The development of research in that scope commenced in the 18th century, the most important turning point, and is now continuing. The purpose of this narrative study is to present electrical stimulation in terms of its progressing development and to draw attention to its significant role in the therapeutic processes utilized in numerous medical specializations and comprehensive strength and endurance training of healthy people. The notions ‘electrical stimulation’ and ‘electrotherapy,’ as well as differences between electric current applications are explained. The most critical moments in the history of electrical stimulation development are highlighted. Recent research is presented, exhibiting the important role of electrical stimulation both in the therapeutic process and in strength and endurance training. This paper contains the most significant aspects of contemporary application of electrical stimulation, as well as recommendations and limitations for current usage in such areas as whole-body electrostimulation, urinary incontinence, pelvic floor muscle rehabilitation, rehabilitation after anterior cruciate ligament surgery, endurance training, and improvement of physical strength and appearance.
keywords:

electrical stimulation, electrotherapy, history of electrotherapy, types of electrical stimulation, muscle pelvic floor, whole-body electrostimulation


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