Diabetic Wounds

Adv Skin Wound Care. 2015 May;28(5):212-9. doi: 10.1097/01.ASW.0000462012.58911.53.

Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy promotes healing and microcirculation of chronic diabetic foot ulcers: a pilot study.

Kwan RL1, Wong WC, Yip SL, Chan KL, Zheng YP, Cheing GL.

Author information

  • 1Rachel Lai-Chu Kwan, MPhil, is a PhD candidate, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University; Wing-Cheung Wong, MBBS, is the Chief of Service and Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, Department of Orthopaedics & Traumatology, Kwong Wah Hospital; Siu-Leung Yip, MMedSc, is a Resident, Department of Orthopaedics & Traumatology, Kwong Wah Hospital; Ka-Lun Chan, MChS, is the Podiatrist-in-Charge, Department of Podiatry, Kwong Wah Hospital; Yong-Ping Zheng, PhD, is the Head and Professor, Interdisciplinary Division of Biomedical Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University; and Gladys Lai-Ying Cheing, PhD, is Professor and Associate Head, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University; all in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China. The authors have disclosed they have no financial relationships related to this article. Acknowledgment: This project was supported by the General Research Fund provided by the Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong SAR Government (grants PolyU 5128/08E and PolyU 5600/11M). Submitted December 16, 2013; accepted in revised form March 4, 2014.



To examine the effects of pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy on promoting the healing and microcirculation of chronic diabetic foot ulcers.


A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial on a homogenous subset of chronic diabetic foot ulcers.


Hospital and university.


Thirteen subjects (7 in the PEMF group and 6 in the control group) diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and had unsatisfactory healing of ulcer(s) in the preceding 4 weeks were recruited.


Subjects were randomly allocated to receive either active PEMF therapy (duration: 60 minutes; frequency: 12 Hz; intensity: 12 Gauss) or nonactive PEMF for 14 sessions within 3 weeks.


Assessment on wound closure, wound depth, and microcirculation were performed at the baseline, end of the treatment period, and 1-month follow-up.


By the end of the treatment period, there was an 18% decrease in wound size in the active PEMF group as compared with a 10% decrease in the control group. The PEMF group demonstrated significant cumulative increase in cutaneous capillary blood velocity (by 28%) and 14% increase in capillary diameter. In contrast, the control group showed a decrease in both capillary blood velocity and diameter.


In this study, PEMF therapy seemed to accelerate wound healing and improve microcirculation.

Vestn Khir Im I I Grek. 1992 Jan;148(1):33-6.

A magnetic field in the combined treatment of suppurative wounds in diabetes mellitus.

[Article in Russian]

Kuliev RA, Babaev RF.

Treatment of purulent wounds was carried out in 72 patients against the background of diabetes mellitus. In 42 of them the complex treatment included using magnetic fields. The application of magnetic fields promoted earlier and more pronounced reduction of the intoxication level, stabilization of the antioxidant system of organism and parameters of immune reactivity. The magnetic fields included in the treatment resulted in accelerated necrolysis, appearance of granulations and epithelialization. The duration of treatment became 6.2 days shorter.