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Indian J Orthop. 2009 Apr;43(2):117-20. doi: 10.4103/0019-5413.50844.

Bone stimulation for fracture healing: What's all the fuss?

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Center for Bone Healing and Research, Performance Physiotherapy, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


Approximately 10% of the 7.9 million annual fracture patients in the United States experience nonunion and/or delayed unions, which have a substantial economic and quality of life impact. A variety of devices are being marketed under the name of "bone growth stimulators." This article provides an overview of electrical and electromagnetic stimulation, ultrasound, and extracorporeal shock waves. More research is needed for knowledge of appropriate device configurations, advancement in the field, and encouragement in the initiation of new trials, particularly large multicenter trials and randomized control trials that have standardized device and protocol methods.


Electrical stimulation; electrical stimulation therapy; fracture healing; low-intensity pulsed ultrasound; pulsed electromagnetic fields

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