Chapter © copyright 2001 by D. L. Kirsch, Mineral Wells, Texas. All Rights Reserved.

Daniel L. Kirsch, Ph.D., D.A.A.P.M.

Chapter Reprint from:
The Textbook of the American Academy of Pain Management
CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida, 2001 Revision.


If there were pharmaceutical products that could control people’s physical pains more than 90% of the time and that were safe enough to use as often as necessary without causing any significant side effects, physicians would prescribe them often. If those drugs could also calm people who were seriously clinically anxious or depressed, while being safe enough for people who are only a bit stressed, they would be the most widely prescribed drugs on Earth. If those same drugs could also heal broken bones and close wounds the pharmacies could not possibly stock enough of them.

What if there is something that could do all these things and so much more, but is not a drug? What if there is a treatment that is so safe it could be used daily to control pain and stress-related diseases. What if it is also so inexpensive, that once purchased for a fraction of the cost of “conventional” care, it will cost almost nothing to use? There is. New forms of electromedicine offer all this and more.

Change has always fought its way into the health care system slowly. A mere 100 years ago it would be considered quackery to propose that invisible little germs could cause disease. Even after the discovery of bacteria, for 35 more years most doctors refused to believe that washing their hands before surgery would make much of a difference. Yet progress in medicine occurred as we developed tools to look deeper into the body, and to see smaller particles. We even speak of subatomic particles, such as electrons that could both cause disease in the form of free radicals and cure known diseases as well as functional disturbances of the body and mind. We have learned to appreciate the power of physics in our lives with convenient technologies such as microwave ovens and cellular telephones. Today, our daily lives are increasingly more influenced by electronics than chemistry.

As we begin this new millennium, we rely on various forms of technology to diagnose our patients, both locally through an ever-increasing armamentarium of devices, and even over long distance with telemedicine. But we can also treat our patients with new technologies for a variety of disorders with remarkable and unprecedented safety and efficacy.

Most systems of health care have historically been based on biophysics. Acupuncture is an obvious example. Chinese call the electrical properties of life Chi energy, Japanese call it Ki, Indians call it Prana, and chiropractors call it innate intelligence. Even homeopathy is based on the energetic residual of the chemical after it has been so diluted that chemists question its continued existence. Western allopathic medicine stands alone in the reliance on synthetic chemical treatments and invasive procedures, many of which impose a risk worse than the disease for which it is offered. In fact, conventional medical care is the third leading cause of death in the United States with at least 225,000 people dying annually from iatrogenic conditions (Starfield, 2000).  

Change takes time in medicine as in any established system. There are strong controlling economic influences and long-standing institutions that will always argue for the status quo. Yet people are more educated and informed about health care than ever before. With that comes concern over side effects of dangerous treatments. Why do we not try the most inexpensive and conservative treatments first, instead of last? When that treatment is based on sound electromagnetic principles, most physicians are surprised to discover that, while not a drug, the results are often more immediate and spectacular than one can imagine. Also, unlike drugs, the results are usually long lasting and cumulative.

While electromedicine has been practiced in some form for thousands of years, research and clinical usage in electromedicine is expanding as never before in history. Perhaps even more than any other therapeutic option, electromedicine is now used routinely by a growing number of practitioners from all of the health care professions, as well as by patients themselves at home. Only the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) restricts the sale of electromedical devices to use by or on the order of licensed health care practitioners. All other countries allow people to purchase therapeutic electromedical devices over-the-counter for their own personal use. Electromedical modalities are easy to use, relatively safe, and the newer technologies, such as microcurrent electrical therapy and cranial electrotherapy stimulation, have proven efficacy unprecedented by any prior form of medical intervention.

One word of caution, though: medicine is still a science. Modern electromagnetic therapies have attracted many charlatans. Simply said, not everything is equally safe and effective. Rely only on evidence-based technologies.

Proceed to Microcurrent Electrical Therapy (MET)


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