With a range of therapies available, ranging from standard veterinary treatment all the way to less mainstream methods such as acupuncture and kinesiology, it is useful to form a better understanding of what is involved. This month, HQ takes a look at electromagnetic therapy.
Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy is a form of treatment that deals with the electric current that flows through the cells of a horse and other mammals. We spoke to Evette Gemmill at Equiproducts, which distributes ActivoMed products. Equine orthopaedic specialists have been using electromagnetic therapy on horses with leg injuries with great success.
Electrical potential in horses
Horses, like us, are electrically charged. All of the cells in a horse have a natural electrical current flowing through them. The blood acts as an electrical conductor and electrolytes are the minerals in the blood that carry electric currents within the horse’s body. All cells in a horse have a resting electrical current flowing through them; this is referred to as electrical potential. Electrical potential is measured in millivolts (MV). 90MV is a normal measurement for resting cells. When a horse has been injured or hurt, the cells suffer and the electrical potential in these cells can reach measurements in the 120MV region. Electromagnetic therapy helps with restoring cells back to an ordinary electrical potential.
How does electromagnetic therapy work?
Electromagnetic blankets, neck wraps and leg wraps are commonly used for targeting the specific areas that need to be treated. The leg wraps concentrate on areas such as the hock, ligaments, knees and tendons. There are coils of wire sealed inside the blanket and the leg wraps. The coils are attached to a power supply or battery which when switched on creates an electromagnetic field around the coils. Electromagnetic therapy results in blood vessels widening and allowing more blood to enter the targeted area, thereby promoting healthier oxygenated blood circulation. Electromagnetic treatment influences cell behaviour by inducing electrical charge in and around the cells.
Beneficial for treatment of:
- Tendon and ligament injury
- Speed up healing time
- Pain relief
- Soothing and relaxing of sore muscles
- Relieving spasms
- Reducing inflammation
- Promoting blood circulation
- Reduces post exercise recovery time
- General relaxation and stress relief
Text: Charlotte Bastiaanse
The full article appears in the June issue of HQ.