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South Med J. 2004 May;97(5):519-24.

Reversal of delayed union of anterior cervical fusion treated with pulsed electromagnetic field stimulation: case report.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Medical Center of Plano, Plano, TX, USA.


We present a case report of anterior cervical fusion non-union that was successfully treated with pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) stimulation. In this case, a C6-C7 nonunion was identified clinically and radiographically 1 year after surgery. Imaging revealed nonunion with partial resorption of the bone graft compared with imaging studies performed 8 months earlier. The patient wore a PEMF stimulation device for 3 h/d for 10 months. After 3 months of treatment, the patient's symptoms were resolved. X-rays obtained after 15 weeks of stimulation showed improvement in bone fusion, and x-rays obtained at 31 weeks after stimulation showed even bone density around the C7 screws. The patient remained symptom-free 13 months after the termination of PEMF stimulation at last assessment. PEMF stimulation demonstrated its clinical potential in healing established nonunion of anterior cervical spine fusion. Its use is noninvasive and can be considered an alternative to surgical intervention in selected patients.

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