Introduction to PEMF and Stroke Recovery
A growing number of medical research studies have sought to understand the relationship between PEMF and stroke prevention, as well as relief from symptoms after experiencing a stroke.
How can pulsed electromagnetic fields (PEMF) help someone who has suffered a stroke? Similarly, can it help patients who have a higher risk of stroke? If so, how does it work – and what is the best way to proceed with a PEMF stroke protocol?
In this post, we break down how PEMF works and the role it can play for stroke rehabilitation, recovery and prevention.
PEMF and Stroke: What is PEMF?
PEMF is short for pulsed electromagnetic fields. It’s an alternative healing modality that uses pulsed magnetic waves to stimulate the body on a cellular level.
Commonly, PEMF therapy involves lying on a specialized PEMF mat that emits these electromagnetic waves. Other types of PEMF devices can also be used to target specific areas of the body, such as the brain.
PEMF is all about cellular stimulation. This stimulation helps to repair, regenerate and re-energize your cells, and resolve cellular dysfunction. In turn, this can help the body heal and recover from a number of ailments, from injuries to mental health issues such as depression. Healthy cells can help the body fend off illness and disease.
Now, let’s look specifically at PEMF and stroke.
What Causes Strokes?
To understand the relationship between PEMF and stroke recovery, it’s important to first understand what strokes are in the first place.
Mayo Clinic describes strokes as a medical emergency that occurs “when the blood supply to part of the brain is interrupted or reduced, preventing brain tissue from getting oxygen and nutrients.” Common symptoms of stroke include:
- Sudden slurred speech or difficulty speaking
- Numbness or paralysis of the face, arm or leg
- Blurred vision or other problems with eyesight
- Trouble walking or maintaining balance
Stroke is most commonly caused by a blocked artery (known as an ischemic stroke) or leaking or bursting of a blood vessel (known as a hemorrhagic stroke). Some people are at higher risk of stroke than others, including people over age 55, those with high blood pressure, heart disease, high red blood cell count and those with a family history of stroke.
Long-term symptoms that continue after a stroke can include paralysis, problems with balance, weakness and fatigue.
What is the Relationship Between PEMF and Stroke?
Healthy cells are critical for preventing stroke and recovering from one.
PEMF works by stimulating cellular activity to enhance your body’s natural healing processes. Some of the greatest benefits of PEMF therapy are improved circulation, improved heart health and reduced inflammation. All of these conditions help to prevent stroke and provide relief to stroke victims.
What the Science Says about PEMF and Stroke Recovery & Prevention
What can medical research tell us about the benefits of a PEMF stroke protocol? Here’s a quick look at some of the studies published on the subject:
- A 2022 study published in Neuromodulation, a respected medical journal, focused specifically on PEMF and stroke recovery. It concluded that PEMF is “a novel attractive therapeutic opportunity for neuroprotection after acute cerebral ischemia.” Researchers stated that PEMF therapy helps to “reduce the size of the infarct area and decrease the levels of pro-inflammatory mediators. In clinical studies, PEMFs stimulation proved to be safe and well tolerated. Preliminary results on acute ischemic stroke patients showed a dose-dependent reduction in the lesion size.”Z
- A 2021 medical article published in Frontiers in Molecular Biosciences analyzed the outcomes of several PEMF stroke studies, including those that studied PEMF and stroke rehabilitation and stroke prevention. The study concluded that “there is increasing evidence that supports the idea that therapeutic effects can be achieved from EMF in ischemic stroke,” not only as a rehabilitation agent but also as a neuroprotective agent.