Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) - Indications and Contraindications

Indications

  • Movement of constricted muscle and tendon tissue and associated ligaments
  • Reduces painful contractions and splintering of muscles as a result of injury (relief of muscle spasms)
  • Muscle movement to increase the level of circulation of blood and lymph
  • Removal of edema
  • Helps break the pain-spasm-pain cycle
  • Reduces cross-fibering during healing
  • Increases range of motion
  • Re-education of muscle
  • Strengthening of muscle after injury
  • Reverse wasting of muscle (used in EPM rehabilitation)
  • May decrease healing time for bone fractures after acute phase
  • Assists in readjustment of dislocations
  • Healing of wounds

Contraindications

  • Cannot be used over:
    • Cardiac pacemakers, electrical implants, metal implants, carotid sinus, epiglottis, abdomen
  • Acute injury
    • Diagnostics of the problem must be performed before treatment
  • Active bleeding
    • Hemorrhaging may increase with stimulation
  • High Fever
    • A secondary problem may exist that needs treatment
  • Infection
    • Potential for spreading a localized infection because of increased blood flow
  • Blood Clots
    • Therapy may dislodge clots due to increased circulation
  • Dislocation
    • Therapy may actually allow desirable readjustment if performed on adjacent sites
  • Pregnancy
    • Therapy applied close to uterus may initiate contractions
  • Cancer
    • Therapy may break loose bits of cancer and increase spread throughout the body
  • Lower motor neuron damage.
    • Polio
    • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
    • Peripheral nerve injuries (brachial plexus)
    • Muscular dystrophies due to unhealthy muscle tissue.