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Episode 105 Content and Overview

A TENS device is a small handheld device that has wires coming out of it that are attached to electrodes in pads that you stick to your skin. TENS stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. TENS units or machines are commonly used in patients who suffer from chronic pain.  A TENS machine works by sending electrical nerve stimulation through low voltage electrical impulses through the electrodes on your lower back. These devices were first used for women in labor in the 1970s, and today these devices are common for use during labor in the United Kingdom. The big question is, does a TENS machine really make a difference in labor? This episode examines the pros and cons of TENS machines and digs into the research and evidence available on their use.

Included in This Episode
  • What is a TENS machine?
  • How does it work?
  • When to use it?
  • Contraindications for using a TENS machine
  • Pros
  • Cons
  • Review: Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) for pain management in labour
  • Pain management for women in labour: an overview of systematic reviews
  • ACOG Committee Opinion: Approaches to limit intervention during birth
  • How to get a TENS machine
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