Electrical bone growth stimulators are a supplemental form of therapy to help enhance the body’s bone healing process. This process is used to aid in the success healing of any type of broken bone, or if surgeries performed to repair displaced fractures, or in a spinal fusion. A bone growth stimulator is a non-operative device that is painless and placed on top of a cast or over the site of the injured bone. It can also be simply worn over an orthopaedic brace, or clothing without lessening its effectiveness.
1. Who benefits from a bone stimulator?
When treating non-uniting fractures, bone growth stimulators are particularly attractive to patients when:
- Surgery presents significant risk to the patient
- The patient does not want to undergo surgery
- Multiple surgical procedures have previously failed
- Patients are taking medication which may deplete calcium levels
- Patients have had a previously failed spine fusion
- Patients are having a multi-level spinal fusion
- Patients smoke (smoking impairs bone healing and formation)
- Patients have a diagnosis of Grade III (or worse) spondylolisthesis
Bone Stimulators can also be of great benefit to those patients diagnosed with: osteoporosis, vascular disease, obesity, diabetes, renal disease, alcoholism.
2. How does it work?
Human bone is actually a living tissue and, like skin for example, has the inherent ability to heal itself when broken or injured. When a bone is broken, it initiates the body to begin the repair process. In the same way, application of an electrical stimulator can enhance the body’s natural bone healing process. A bone growth stimulator emits an electromagnetic field that helps stimulate and enhance the body’s own healing response to a broken bone.