Knowledge Base

Magnetic Therapy

What is Magnetic Therapy?

Some alternative medicine practitioners believe that magnets can be used to help manage pain. Static magnets or electromagnetic devices are applied or worn on the body and is applied by the patient in most cases. Wearable magnets like jewelry and insoles are common; other magnetized products like creams, supplements and blankets are used as well. 

Patients with pace makers, or those using insulin pumps, should not use magnets, as they may interfere with these medical devices. 

How does it work?

Magnets are thought to improve blood flow (as hemoglobin carries a very weak magnetic charge). Other alternative medicine practitioners believe that magnets help to restore the ‘electromagentic energy balance’ of the body. However, studies have not shown that magnets have any effect on blood flow and an ‘electromagnetic energy balance’ of the human body is not recognized by Western medicine. Studies have not found any impact from magnets on pain relief.  

Related evidence

Weintraub MI, Wolfe GI, Barohn RA, Cole SP, Parry GJ, Hayat G, Cohen JA, Page JC, Bromberg MB, Schwartz SL; Magnetic Research Group. Static magnetic field therapy for symptomatic diabetic neuropathy: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2003 May;84(5):736-46.