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Efectos analgesicos de la estimulacion electrica nerviosa transcutanea en pacientes con fibromialgia: una revision sistematica (Analgesic effects of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) in patients with fibromyalgia: a systematic review) [Spanish; with consumer summary]
Megia Garcia A, Serrano-Munoz D, Bravo-Esteban E, Ando Lafuente S, Avendano-Coy J, Gomez-Soriano J
Atencion Primaria 2019 Aug-Sep;51(7):406-415
systematic review

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) has an analgesic effect greater than placebo or other treatments in patients with fibromyalgia. Furthermore, it was intended to analyze the optimal application parameters to achieve a greater reduction of pain. DESIGN: A systematic review. DATA SOURCE: Randomized clinical trials on the effect of TENS on fibromyalgia in the databases PubMed, Cochrane and PEDro until November 2016. SELECTION OF STUDIES: 8 studies out of a total of 62 were selected. Controlled clinical trials in which TENS was applied in patients with fibromyalgia were included. DATA EXTRACTION: Pain was analyzed as the main variable, although other variables such as fatigue, quality of life and impact, range of motion and depression were also included. RESULTS: 6 out of 8 studies obtained a significant decrease of pain. In 2 studies, TENS was applied as complementary treatment to therapeutic exercise with results evidencing a decrease in pain. The rest of the variables studied presented a great variability and conclusive results could not be established. CONCLUSIONS: Treatment with TENS is effective for reducing pain in people with fibromyalgia. In addition, the inclusion of TENS in therapeutic exercise programs seems to have a greater effect than practicing therapeutic exercise in isolation. However, no efficacy has been demonstrated in other variables different to pain. Further studies are needed to investigate the optimization of the parameters of the TENS and a greater consensus among the variables used.

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