Home > Ask Our Experts > Is This Pain Due to Use of a TENS Machine?

Is This Pain Due to Use of a TENS Machine?

By: Jo Johnson - Updated: 18 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Tens Machine Back Pain Pain Relief

Q.

I have lower back pain and used a TENS machine for the first time on Friday for about five hours on and off.

On the Saturday I was unable to get out of bed I could not move due to severe back pain but it was not just in my lower back but higher up.

This has continued so far for two days (it's now Monday) although I am able to move about now so it is not as severe. Can you tell me if this is due to the TENS or is it just coincidental?

(A.C., 1 February 2009)

A.

You have my sympathy at having back pain and I expect you have tried all manner of solutions. Deciding to try a TENS machine was a good idea as they can be beneficial to many people suffering all kinds of pain. They are often sought as they encourage the body to manage pain without taking any further medications that may carry side-effects. They work in two ways:

  1. By encouraging the body to produce its own pain relieving chemicals
  2. By blocking pain messages to the brain

On the whole, the chances of 'overdoing it' with the TENS machine are unlikely as many manufacturers and healthcare experts agree that it can't really be overused per se, however others are of the belief that it can indeed be left on too long or set to a frequency that is too high if you are not used to it.Really, when a person begins using a TENS machine, it should be applied with caution and left on for an hour or so until you are feeling more confident with the product and can more easily manage longer periods at a higher setting. Some people have also complained that they have sensitive red patches where the electrode pads were situated, but this may be more to do with an allergy to the material than anything else.

There is a small chance that your additional pain was coincidental and that you would have experienced it regardless of using the TENS machine, but there is an equal possibility that the extra pain was caused as a result of prolonged use of the machine.My advice would be to try the machine again but proceed with more caution and do not leave it on for as long until you are a regular user.

If you are unsure of whether you are using it correctly, please see your pain specialist or GP or ring the manufacturer's helpline for further advice and guidance on the matter. Good luck with finding a suitable form of relief for your back pain and let us know how you got on.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Hi, I am currently in my third year of acupuncture at the College of Integrated Chinese Medicine in Reading (UK). I am doing my dissertation on chronic lower back and I am very interested in the article written by Jo Johnson entitled Back Pain and Depression. Would it be possible to receive the references included in his document, please? Thank you very much for your help, Best Wishes Sakina Naessany
yellowmoon - 19-May-11 @ 11:35 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Kat
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    My ll yr old girl has bulging disk tear always in pain took her a and e. She now seeing back surgeon in a week not half a year how can this pain…
    25 June 2017
  • eadndel drinkh20
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    Arch your back by pushing off floor with arms straight with hips and legs flat on floor repeat 6 times 3 to 4 time a day. This arch will hurt but…
    8 June 2017
  • Ahmed
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I also have same problem plz suggest me to which doctor I should refer neurologist or orthopedic I m unable to stand plz suggest me
    6 June 2017
  • RMP
    Re: Back Pain and Hernia
    Dear Dr. I am running 61 and sitting nearly 6 to 8 hrs in front of computer or reading with break at every one hour for few minutes. This is…
    26 May 2017
  • Micky
    Re: Ligament Damage and Back Pain
    I had prolapse of rectum op in 2001.he also said he had repaired a ligament.cane home couldn't bare down to open bowels.lost…
    21 April 2017
  • Vis
    Re: Spinal Dislocation
    i have enjoyed the literature.
    17 April 2017
  • KFreedOM
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I'm so glad to have read this article about dehydration affecting the disc. It just happened to be something that I was curious about and decided…
    26 December 2016
  • Kal
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I was suffering from sciatic pain for nearly 1 year and don't have any idea what is the reason for pain. After 1 year 3 weeks back I went to…
    26 November 2016
  • Skb24 going on 75
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I am 24 and i have severe back pain i have a buldging disc in my L1 and L5 almost my entire lower lumbar is dehydrated and i have lost nearly 50%…
    21 November 2016
  • billa
    Re: Dehydrated Discs
    I am 25. My mri result shows I hv got dehydration of L4/5 disc.my doctor advice me to take Diclofenac and hv physiotherapy ,but I Still hv pain…
    16 October 2016
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the BackPainExpert website. Please read our Disclaimer.