Characteristics of lateral electrical surface stimulation (LESS) and its effect on the degree of spinal deformity in idiopathic scoliosis
Clinical studies were carried out in the period of 2003-2006 at the Provincial Children's Rehabilitation Hospital in Ameryka near Olsztyn (Poland). The study involved a group of children and youth exhibiting spinal deformity progression in idiopathic scoliosis (IS) of more than 5° per year according to the Cobb scale. Four hundred and fifty patients between 4 and 15 years of age were divided into three groups (n = 150). Group I and group II received 2-hour and 9-hour lateral electrical surface stimulation (LESS), respectively, whereas group III (control) was treated only with corrective exercises for 30 minutes twice a day. LESS was performed with the use of a battery-operated SCOL-2 stimulator manufactured by Elmech, Warsaw, Poland.
The effectiveness of this method was confirmed in the treatment of spinal IS in children and youth, especially when the initial spinal deformity did not exceed 20° according to the Cobb scale. A short-duration electrostimulation (2 hours daily) was found to produce results similar to those obtained after overnight (9 h) electrostimulation. Moreover, the analysis of the Harrington prognostic index F confirms the positive effect of LESS in both groups of patients (2 h and 9 h of LESS).