Author(s): Farndale RW, Maroudas A, Marsland TP
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Abstract Pulsed magnetic fields (PMFs) are widely used to treat difficult fractures of bone and other disorders of connective tissue. It is not clear how they interact with tissue metabolism, although it has been proposed that induced currents or electric fields impinging on cell membranes may modify their ion transport function. This hypothesis was tested by treating in vitro models for ion transport processes with short-term exposure to PMFs. No change occurred in active transport of potassium or calcium in human red cells or in calcium transport through an epithelial membrane. We considered less direct action on red cell membranes, that their permeability might be modified after PMF treatment, and also that PMFs might alter the extracellular ionic activity within connective tissue by interacting with its Donnan potential. Each of these studies proved negative, and we conclude that the PMF waveforms used here do not exert a general short-term effect on cellular ion transport.
This article was published in Bioelectromagnetics
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Pathology