Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation

Adams E
Record ID 32010001515
Authors' objectives:

The Chief Consultant of the VA Prosthetics and Sensory Aids Service (PSAS) Strategic Healthcare Group requested the VA Technology Assessment Program (VATAP) to provide an overview of the available evidence on the effectiveness of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) units. TENS units are battery-powered, noninvasive electrical stimulation devices commonly used in physiotherapy to manage both acute and chronic pain arising from various conditions. The information would be used by the VHA Prosthetic Clinical Management Program (PCMP) to establish clinical practice recommendations for use of TENS in the veteran population.

Authors' recommendations: Individual practitioners should judge appropriate application of TENS units for pain management on an individual basis. Appropriate use of TENS should result in improved mood or quality of life, improved physical or functional capacity, or diminished use of other analgesics. For centralized prosthetic funding of TENS units, programs utilizing TENS units as part of treatment programs are required to incorporate use of a formal outcome assessment tool to measure these changes such as the McGill Pain Questionnaire, SF-36V, etc.
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2001
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: United States
MeSH Terms
  • Humans
  • Transcutaneous Electric Nerve Stimulation
Organisation Name: VA Technology Assessment Program
Contact Address: Liz Adams, VA Technology Assessment Program, Office of Patient Care Services (11T), VA Boston Healthcare System Room 4D-142, 150 South Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02130 USA Tel: +1 617 278 4469; Fax: +1 617 264 6587;
Contact Name:
Contact Email:
Copyright: VA Technology Assessment Program (VATAP)
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.