Effect of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for pain control after total knee arthroplasty: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Yongjun Zhu, Yuxing Feng, Lihua Peng
Department of Orthopaedics, The Ninth People’s Hospital of Chongqing, Chongqing 400700, China
Introduction: Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation is a possible adjunctive therapy to pharmacological treatment for controlling pain after total knee arthroplasty. However, the results are controversial. A systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted to explore the effect of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation on patients with total knee arthroplasty.
Methods: PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, EBSCO, and Cochrane Library databases were searched systematically. Randomized controlled trials assessing the effect of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation on patients with total knee arthroplasty were included. Two investigators independently searched articles, extracted data, and assessed the quality of included studies. Primary outcome was visual analogue scale (VAS) score over a period of 24 h. Meta-analysis was performed using a random-effect model.
Results: Six randomized controlled trials involving 529 patients were included in the meta-analysis. Overall, compared with control intervention, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation supplementation intervention was found to significantly reduce VAS scores and total postoperative morphine dose over a period of 24 h, and to improve active range of knee motion (standard mean difference (SMD) = 0.37; 95% confidence interval (95% CI) = 0.06–0.68; p = 0.02), but had no effect on VAS scores at 2 weeks (SMD = 0.20; 95% CI = –0.07 to 0.48; p = 0.15).
Conclusion: Compared with control intervention, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation supplementation intervention was found to significantly reduce pain and morphine requirement over a period of 24 h and to promote functional recovery in patients who have undergone total knee arthroplasty.