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Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants
SJR: 0.133 SNIP: 0.491 CiteScore™: 0.89

ISSN Print: 1050-6934
ISSN Online: 1940-4379

Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants

DOI: 10.1615/JLongTermEffMedImplants.2016016816
pages 261-270

The Use of Combined Magnetic Field Treatment for Fracture Nonunions: A Prospective Observational Study

Mark Phillips
Global Research Solutions, Inc., Burlington, Ontario, Canada
Jon Zoltan
The Orthopedic Clinic Association, Phoenix, Arizona
Brad A. Petrisor
Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, Department of Surgery, Centre for Evidence-Based Orthopaedics, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Sheila Sprague
Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; University of Rochester Medical Center, Orthopaedics Department, Rochester, NY
Judy Baumhauer
University of Rochester Medical Center, Orthopaedics Department, Rochester, NY


This study evaluated the effectiveness and safety of bone growth stimulation using combined magnetic field (CMF) for the treatment of fracture nonunions. In this prospective multicenter study, patients were assessed monthly for 9 months, or until they demonstrated a healed nonunion, and were assessed at a final follow-up 3 months after treatment completion. The primary outcome was the presence or absence of fracture healing at the nonunion site, determined by clinical and radiographic assessment. One hundred twelve patients with 116 fracture nonunions were followed in this study. Fifty-two (61.9%) patients demonstrated a healed nonunion between treatment initiation and 12-months–posttreatment initiation (9 months of treatment plus 3 months posttreatment follow- up). Tibial nonunions had a higher percentage of healed fractures compared to other fracture types (78% vs. 46.5%, respectively; p = 0.004). This study demonstrated that noninvasive CMF technology healed 78% of tibial fracture nonunions and 61.9% of all fracture nonunions. Additionally, pain at rest, with stress, and on weight bearing all decreased following treatment with CMF, with no adverse events reported. These results indicate that CMF is a beneficial noninvasive treatment modality for nonunions.