Electrical Stimulation for Wound Healing: A Review of Evidence From In Vitro Studies, Animal Experiments, and Clinical Trials
International Journal of Lower Extremity Wounds
This article reviews theories linked to endogenous bioelectric currents and the role they may play in wound repair with further appraisal of in vitro and in vivo research related to the effects of clinically applicable electrical currents on protein synthesis, cell migration, and antibacterial outcomes. In addition, studies on the effects of electrical stimulation (ES) on skin grafts, donor sites, and musculocutaneous flaps in animals are evaluated, as well as assessments of numerous clinical reports that examined the effects of ES on angiogenesis, perfusion, PtcO2, and epithelialization. Finally, a plethora of clinical trials related to the responses of chronic lower extremity wounds to ES therapy are reviewed, with emphasis on wounds caused by venous insufficiency, diabetic neuropathy, and ischemia in patients with and without diabetes mellitus. A glossary that addresses ES terminology is also included.