Healthcare News & Insights

Magnet therapy aids in recovery for stroke patients, according to study

New research shows that using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to stimulate nerve cells in the brain may aid in recovery for stroke patients. 

The experimental treatment uses a large electromagnetic coil placed against the scalp, which some researchers believe encourages brain cells to form new connections and repair damage caused by a stroke.

One study that touts the benefits of magnet stimulation, including improved muscle strength and motor skills, was conducted by the Santa Lucia Foundation in Italy and published in the journal Neurology.

In the study, 20 recovering stroke patients received standard brain retraining for two weeks. Ten of them also received magnetic therapy over the same time period, while the other half were given a placebo treatment.

The patients were tested at the beginning of the two weeks and again at the end. The tests involved crossing through lines and copying figures and shapes, as well as every day activities such as dialing phone numbers and sorting coins. Those who received magnetic therapy improved 22%, while those under the placebo treatment did not improve at all.

While TMS isn’t being widely used in medical facilities, larger clinical trials may lead to greater acceptance, according to some stroke specialists.

 

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