Impact of interferential current on recovery of pressure ulcers grade 1 and 2

Akram Shahrokhi, Azam Ghorbani, Atefeh Aminianfar



Background: Pressure ulcers’ treatment imposes a considerable cost on health system and patients. Electrical stimulation has already been introduced as an effective method for promoting wound healing. This study was conducted to determine the impact of interferential current (IF) on healing of pressure ulcers (grade1 and 2).

Materials and Methods: In this clinical trial, 23 patients (12 as cases and 11 as controls) were recruited. The study group was treated with IF daily for 10 days. IF current was applied via isoplanar current with a sweep frequency of 30–99 Hz and with tolerable intensity for 15–20 min. Before intervention, condition of the wounds was assessed and recorded. Routine characteristics of the ulcers in both groups were recorded before intervention (first day) and on the fifth and tenth days after intervention. SPSS (ver. 13) with paired t‑test and Fisher’s exact test was also used to analyze the data. A P-value of 0.05 was considered significant.

Results: According to one‑sample Kolmogorov–Smirnov test, demographic characteristics, features of ulcer, as well as the intensity of pain were not significantly different between the study and control groups. All patients in the control and study groups were complaining of pain (7.25 ± 1.21 in the intervention group vs. 6.35 ± 1.28 in the control group). Ulcer size decreased significantly in the study group (P = 0.012) with a significant reduction in pain intensity (P = 0.000), amount of discharge (P = 0.008), and level of edema (P = 0.000), compared to controls.

Conclusion: As a first study in this field, the results showed that the use of IF current can accelerate pressure ulcer healing and reduce its size. As IF current can be considered as a deeper form of Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS), it seems to be a safe method with no side effects.

Key words: Healing, interferential current, pressure ulcer

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