Iontophoresis refers to the delivery of medications to the body using electrical currents. It is one of the most important physiotherapy modalities and is often used by physical therapists under extreme conditions.

It is a medical device that delivers mild electric currents to administer medications across biological membranes. Most of the time, it is submerged in water.

How it works

Iontophoresis uses electrical stimulation to deliver medications across membranes and injured tissue to the body. It is commonly used to decrease sweating but can also be used for physical properties such as decreasing inflammation, scar tissue, and pain relief.

It works using the principles of electrical polarity, which work on the opposite principle. This states that opposite ions always attract one another. This process uses medication that has a particular polarity. When the electrostatic signals from the electrode are transmitted to the medication, it repels the electric charge. This aids in the absorption of medication into the skin.

Risk factors

Although iontophoresis is not a complicated procedure, it is recommended that patients with certain medical conditions like pregnancy epilepsy or pacemakers or other implants such as knee replacements be informed before they begin treatment.

You can also apply petroleum jelly to any open-bound scratch on your skin to prevent irritation. If you’re performing this treatment at home, it is a good idea to add some baking soda to ensure that the pH is maintained correctly.


This is not a recommended treatment. However, physical therapists may use it when there is no alternative method of delivering the medicine to the body. Make sure you are not suffering from any health conditions that would prohibit the use of this therapy. Also, immediately report any adverse effects to your physical therapist to prevent any further damage

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