The long-term outcome of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation in the treatment for patients with chronic pain: a randomized, placebo-controlled trial
Pain Practice, 04/26/2012
Oosterhof J et al. – Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation and sham transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) show similar effects in patients with chronic pain over a period of 1 year. Authors found support for a long sustained placebo effect.Methods
- Authors performed a randomized placebo–controlled trial in patients with chronic pain (165), referred to a multidisciplinary pain center of a university hospital.
- Main outcome measures are the proportion of patients satisfied with treatment result and willing to continue treatment, pain intensity, pain disability, and perceived health status.
- Survival analysis of time courses of proportions of satisfied patients revealed no significant differences (P = 0.79; log–rank test) for TENS treatment compared to sham TENS.
- After 1 year, 30% (24/81) of the patients of the TENS group and 23% (19/82) of the sham TENS group were satisfied with treatment result.
- These patients experienced a mean overall improvement of 62.7% (n = 43).
- This effect was not significantly different between both groups.
- For satisfied patients, there were no differences in pain intensity or disability and perceived health status between the TENS and sham TENS group.