Common steps and sub-activities
H-wave therapy (HWT) is a form of electrical stimulation that produces a direct, localized effect on the conduction of underlying nerves.
When done correctly a tiny electric current is applied to trigger points on the meridians. In effect, the minute applied current is an alternative to, for example, the needles used in acupuncture or the finger presses used in acupressure.
The electrical stimulation used in HWT differs from other forms of electrical stimulation such as TENS in terms of its waveform; it is intended to emulate the H waveform found in nerve signals, thus permitting the machine to use less power while attaining greater and deeper penetration of its low-frequency current.
It has been used in the treatment of pain related to diabetic neuropathy, muscle sprains, temporomandibular joint disorders, type I complex regional pain syndrome as well as the healing of wounds such as diabetic ulcers. It has been used as an alternative to TENS for dental analgesia.
In a 1999 randomized controlled trial involving a mechanical pain model, the analgesic effects of HWT were found to be short-lasting and identical to those provided by TENS therapy. HWT has not been shown effective in treating chronic pain due to ischemia.