Below, you’ll find multiple studies supporting iontophoresis as an effective, non-invasive treatment that helps patients find more effective and immediate relief.
Lateral epicondylitis is the most common overuse syndrome affecting the elbow. Recommended treatment options include patient education, behavioral modifications, hand therapy, corticosteroid treatment, and possibly surgery.
Steroid administration with iontophoresis was compared to steroid injection in patients with tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis). Results showed that patients receiving iontophoresis showed significantly better improvement in grip strength (v. baseline) and immediate pain relief than those treated with a steroid injection. Patients who received steroid treatment delivered by iontophoresis were more likely to return to work faster and without restriction compared to injection treatment. At 6 month follow up, all groups had equivalent results for all measured outcomes - suggesting iontophoresis should be considered when more immediate treatment results are desired.
Plantar Fasciitis is a common cause of foot and heel pain, especially among athletes.
Patients who underwent iontophoresis experienced greater immediate relief of symptoms than those treated with traditional modalities. This study suggests traditional treatment (ice, stretching and strengthening exercises and heel cups) works towards the resolution of symptoms, but when immediate relief is needed, iontophoresis should be considered part of the initial treatment.
The purpose of this study was to describe and experimentally examine the iontophoresis drug delivery model.
In vitro iontophoresis demonstrated that dexamethasone phosphate can be delivered to a depth up to 12mm following a 40 mA/min simulation dosage at pharmacologic concentrations. In human models, low current (~0.1 mA) and longer duration iontophoresis resulted in cutaneous vasoconstriction that was longer lasting and in greater magnitude than similar drug doses delivered by higher current (1.5 – 4.0 mA) and shorter duration iontophoresis.
Evidence in this study suggests that comparable iontophoretic doses delivered at low currents over several hours are more effective than those delivered by high currents of 10 – 30 minutes in the creation of a localized physiologic effect for DEX/DEX-P, based on the magnitude and duration of local vasoconstriction. Low current iontophoresis demonstrated cutaneous vasoconstriction and measurable skin cooling. Conversely, iontophoresis at a higher current and shorter duration resulted in vasodilation and erythema lasting approximately 2 hours following administration.
The objective of this study is to document the optimal parameters required for clinical iontophoresis of dexamethasone phosphate.
After an 80 mA/min drug delivery dosage was administered, the in-vivo iontophoretic delivery was measured to be 1.40 +/- 0.23 mg, and the corresponding passive delivery was 0.26 +/- 0.16 mg. The in-vitro experiments confirm iontophoretic delivery of dexamethasone phosphate across artificial membranes, and the in-vivo experiments suggest that drug is delivered into human skin.