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Effectiveness of Microcurrent for Treatment of Tennis Elbow

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
University of Hertfordshire Identifier:
First received: January 5, 2009
Last updated: June 18, 2010
Last verified: August 2009

Tennis elbow is a relatively common musculoskeletal disorder that can cause significant pain and disability. Treatment of the disorder is not always successful, and it often recurs or becomes chronic. More effective management options are required. There is evidence that electric microcurrent can promote tissue healing and symptom resolution in various chronic hard and soft tissue disorders, but few human studies investigating its use with chronic tendon problems. It is an easily applied therapy with very few reports of side effects. It can be applied at home using a portable unit and, if it is clinically effective, may also prove more cost effective than other therapies.

A clinical trial is planned to evaluate the therapy but, in the absence of relevant published evidence, a preliminary study is required to look for a treatment effect and inform a power calculation for sample size, The study will also allow some investigation of dose-dependence, which is a key issue in many forms of electrotherapy. Finally it will enable evaluation of elements of the full trial protocol so that any weaknesses can be addressed before it begins.

Condition Intervention Phase
Tennis Elbow
Device: Microcurrent (Elexoma Medic)
Phase 2
Phase 3

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Effectiveness of Microcurrent in the Treatment of Chronic Tennis Elbow - a Preliminary Trial

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by University of Hertfordshire:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Tendon pathology as indicated by sonography [ Time Frame: baseline, 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 4 months ]
  • Patient-Rated Global Change Score [ Time Frame: 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 4 months ]

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Pain Free Grip Strength [ Time Frame: baseline, 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 4 months ]
  • Patient-rated Tennis Elbow Questionnaire [ Time Frame: baseline, 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 4 months ]
  • Patient-Specific Functional Scale [ Time Frame: baseline, 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 4 months ]
  • Adverse events [ Time Frame: 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 4 months ]

Estimated Enrollment: 24
Study Start Date: December 2008
Study Completion Date: December 2009
Primary Completion Date: December 2009 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Treatment 1
50 microamp amplitude
Device: Microcurrent (Elexoma Medic)
monophasic frequency modulated square wave current applied for 99 minutes daily for 21 days
Other Name: Elexoma Medic
Experimental: Treatment 2
500 microamp amplitude
Device: Microcurrent (Elexoma Medic)
monophasic frequency modulated square wave current applied for 99 minutes daily for 21 days
Other Name: Elexoma Medic


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • symptoms of tennis elbow for at least 3 months
  • clinical diagnosis of tennis elbow

Exclusion Criteria:

  • significant symptom improvement in previous month
  • receipt of any active treatment for the condition in the previous month
  • currently under the care of another health professional for tennis elbow
  • current cervical radiculopathy
  • other pathology affecting distal upper limb
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00817232

United Kingdom
University of Hertfordshire
Hatfield, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom, AL10 9AB
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Hertfordshire
  More Information

Additional Information:
Responsible Party: Leon Poltawski, University of Hertfordshire Identifier: NCT00817232     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: HEPEC/10/08/05
Study First Received: January 5, 2009
Last Updated: June 18, 2010

Keywords provided by University of Hertfordshire:
tennis elbow
tissue healing

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Tennis Elbow
Musculoskeletal Diseases
Arm Injuries
Wounds and Injuries processed this record on April 27, 2017