Ultra-low-frequency transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation (ULF-TENS) in subjects with craniofacial pain: A retrospective study

Stefano Mummolo, Alessandro Nota, Simona Tecco, Silvia Caruso, Enrico Marchetti, Giuseppe Marzo, Tommaso Cutilli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of ultra-low-frequency transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (ULF-TENS) on pain and electromyographic values in subjects affected by temporomandibular disorders. Methods: A retrospective evaluation of 80 non-consecutive patients (58 women, 22 men, mean age 35.3 ± 9.9 years) suffering from pain associated with temporomandibular disorders was performed. The sample was treated with ULF-TENS, and outcomes were evaluated by anamnestic index, dysfunction index, visual analog scale, and surface electromyography of the masticatory muscles. Results: An improvement was seen in pain and electromyographic values. The visual analog scale showed a mean decrease from 8 to 2; surface electromyographic values in the masseter area decreased from 2.7 ± 0.1 to 1.5 ± 0.1. Conclusion: ULF-TENS seems to be effective in reducing pain symptomatology of subjects affected by temporomandibular disorders, with a reduction in the surface electromyographic activity in the masseter area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)396-401
Number of pages6
JournalCranio - Journal of Craniomandibular Practice
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2020


  • electromyography
  • facial pain
  • masseter muscles
  • Temporomandibular disorders
  • transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation
  • visual analog scale

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Dentistry(all)


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