Impulse magnetic-field therapy for insomnia: A double-blind, placebo-controlled study


This 4-week double-blind, placebo-controlled study assessed the efficacy of impulse magnetic-field therapy for insomnia. One hundred one patients were randomly assigned to either active treatment (n = 50) or placebo (n = 51) and allocated to one of three diagnostic groups: (1) sleep latency; (2) interrupted sleep; or (3) nightmares. Efficacy endpoints were intensity of sleep latency, frequency of interruptions, sleepiness after rising, daytime sleepiness, difficulty with concentration, and daytime headaches. In the active-treatment group, the values of all criteria were significantly lower at study end (P < .00001). The placebo group also showed significant symptomatic improvement (P < .05), but the differences between groups were highly significant (P < .00001). Seventy percent (n = 34) of the patients given active treatment experienced substantial or even complete relief of their complaints; 24% (n = 12) reported clear improvement; 6% (n = 3) noted a slight improvement. Only one placebo patient (2%) had very clear relief; 49% (n = 23) reported slight or clear improvement; and 49% (n = 23) saw no change in their symptoms. No adverse effects of treatment were reported.

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Correspondence to Rainer B. Pelka Ph.D..

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Pelka, R.B., Jaenicke, C. & Gruenwald, J. Impulse magnetic-field therapy for insomnia: A double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Adv Therapy 18, 174–180 (2001).

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  • insomnia
  • magnetic waves
  • alternative therapy
  • impulse magnetic-field therapy