Commonly called 'E-stim' for short, electrostimulation can be added to an acupuncture treatment for a number of different health concerns. Typically E-stim is added to a treatment to address issues arising from pain, nerve damage, nerve function, chronic tension, muscle weakness, and more.
The machine generates gentle waves and pulses of current, which are then conducted through the needles (by placing a clamp onto each one) and transmitted into the tissues. Although the word 'electro' is used - its not electricity, and the machine runs off a small 9v battery.
Different settings of the machine allow for different uses, and different frequencies to be administered.
Here is an example of what the different frequencies may be used for:
2 Hz - mediates the μ- and δ-opioid receptors in the brain for pain relief. 2 Hz also induces the release of β-endorphin, enkephalin, and endomorphin within the central nervous system.
100 Hz - mediates K-opioid receptors in the brain for pain perception, neuroendocrine physiology, affective behavior, and cognition.
More detailed information on the physiology of electrostimulation and acupuncture can be found here.
Learn more about 'E-stim' therapy
A pleasant, gentle buzzing or tingling sensation is experienced during electrostimulation treatment, and should never be painful or uncomfortable.
Your practitioner will determine if E-stim is appropriate for you and your health concerns.
If you have a pacemaker or other electronically-controlled medical implant device, it may not be appropriate to have electrostimulation treatment.