2017 Volume 44 Issue 4 Pages 272-276
Purpose: Women with severe menstrual pain take medications for uncomfortable symptoms. However, medications sometimes cause side effects such as gastric ulcers and allergies. Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) relieves pain following trauma to the extremities such as a sprain or fracture and has fewer side effects. We used TENS to relieve menstrual pain and evaluated its effectiveness.
Methods: Twenty-two healthy adult Japanese women participated in this study, and four menstrual cycles of each woman were analyzed. TENS (Trio 300, Ito Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation, Ito Co. Ltd., Japan) was used to relieving menstrual pain in two menstrual cycles (TENS group), and for the other two menstrual cycles, TENS was not used (control group). Measurement began when the woman first felt the pain from menses starting time to 0 minutes and set after that to total of 10 times per 60 minutes until 240 minutes every 10 minutes until 60 minutes. In the TENS group, TENS was used for 30 minutes beginning at 0 minutes. Women with severe menstrual pain were permitted medication and their data were not included.
Results: We analyzed 24 menstrual cycles (15 women) of the TENS group and 27 menstrual cycles (19 women) of the control group. In the TENS group, significant pain relief was obtained at 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 minutes from the beginning of the menses compared with the control group. No side effects due to TENS were observed.
Conclusion: This study suggest that TENS is useful for relieving menstrual pain and is not associated with severe side effects.