Overuse of the forearm can cause tendon damage, which results in pain that can worsen over time. Multiple treatment options exist, such as TENS, which stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, as well as the new E5 Fiix Elbow device from Stā Active. Each offers a different approach to this common injury.
So, what does the Fiix Elbow do that a TENS unit can’t?
Specific treatment protocolThe Fiix Elbow wearable device was designed by physical therapists and other experts specifically to treat tennis elbow. TENS, on the other hand, is used for pain relief for a variety of conditions, including arthritis, fibromyalgia, low back pain, neuropathy, bursitis and more. Nothing about TENS makes it exclusive to tennis elbow.
Unique to the Fiix Elbow is that it automates a proven clinical procedure so that instead of having to visit a physical therapist, chiropractor or acupuncturist, you can administer this protocol conveniently at home. Instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization (IASTM) has been used for decades and is scientifically backed.
Stimulating healingIASTM encompasses repetitive strokes on the injured area using a stainless-steel tool in order to disrupt the tissue and administer myofascial release. This results in the breakdown of scar tissue and release of adhesions and fascial restrictions, as well as increasing circulation to bring oxygen and healing properties to the site support healing. Ultimately, inducing this microtrauma helps promote functional restoration.
The Fiix Elbow is a wearable device that delivers these deep strokes to the user’s forearm automatically, without the need for a healthcare professional. Using the Fiix Elbow for 10 minutes per day, three days per week for eight weeks, along with physical therapist-prescribed basic stretching and strengthening exercises, is a simple, effective protocol.
In contrast to the Fiix Elbow, TENS uses electrodes applied to the injured area to deliver a mild electrical current for pain relief. The current stimulates the nerve cells that block the transmission of pain, thereby reducing the ability of the nervous system to send pain signals to the spinal cord and brain, and modifying a person’s perception of pain.
Furthermore, TENS stimulates the release of endorphins, which serve as the body’s natural analgesic. Effects of the pain relief from TENS can last for a few minutes to up to 24 hours.
So, while TENS offers a temporary reprieve from pain, the Fiix Elbow therapy not only alleviates discomfort, but also is focused on eliciting a healing response in the injured tendon for ultimate recovery.
Overall Fiix Elbow efficacyIn a patient trial using the Fiix Elbow, 96 of participants experienced reduced pain, with an 85 percent increase in grip strength and a 76 percent improvement in functional activities.
Research on TENS for pain relief to date is inconclusive, with inconsistent results due to a lack of quality scientific studies and randomized trials.
Ultimately, then, to address tennis elbow, the Fiix Elbow is a stronger and more effective therapeutic option than TENS.