Russian Current


~The Russian Current waveform is a type of electrical stimulation that delivers medium frequency current in alternating pulses or bursts of energy and is effective in reducing pain as well as increasing muscular strength.

~An electrotherapeutic modality that uses medium frequency (2,000-10,000 Hz) polyphasic alternating current waveforms to strengthen muscles.

~Although it is a medium frequency current but the nerves are stimulated because it is interrupted to give a low frequency stimulation of 50 Hz.

~Russian current consists of 2500 Hz frequency evenly alternating medium frequency current applied as a series of separate bursts having pulse duration of 0.2 ms (200 µs) which is interspersed (interrupted) with 10 ms (1000 µs) when no current flows producing 50 bursts per second (50 Hz) which is in fact like low frequency faradic type of current.

~Total Physio uses Russian Stimulation to stimulate motor nerves. Its capability of a high frequency (2500Hz) allows for deep muscle penetration, stimulation and intense muscle fiber contraction.

~It’s commonly used to relieve muscle spasms and assist patients suffering from Scoliosis.

~The current Russian or Russian Stimulation is the name of the treatment of muscle tone achieved through a device for electrical stimulation can promote the contraction of muscles by means of electric current of medium and low frequency depolarized.

~The device emits electrical impulses that speed up metabolism, tense muscles and reduce body fat.

~The theoretical basis for the use of this current is that maximal electrical stimulation of nearly all motor units in a muscle to contract something that can not be obtained in the voluntary contraction. This produces greater muscle contraction and hence produces hypertrophy.

*Protocols for Russian current:-

~Protocol for muscle strengthening/ hypertrophy:
~Amplitude/ Intensity:
~Tetanic contraction
~Pulse rate:
~50 – 70 Hz
~Pulse duration:
~150 – 200 µs
~Apply current during volitional activities (voluntary activities)

~Isometric exercises at several points through range of motion.
Slow isokinetic (movements in same direction) exercises 5 – 10° per second.
Short arc joint movement when ROM is restricted.

~Protocol for muscle spasm reduction:
~Amplitude: Tetanic contraction depending upon patient tolerance
~Pulse rate: 50 – 70 Hz
~Pulse duration: 50 – 175 µs
~Muscle contraction isometric


~carrier frequency
~current amplitude
~bursts frequency
~burst duration
~on/off ratio
~duty cycle
~ramp up and down
~training protocol
~duration & frequency of treatment
~electrode placement
~time delay switch

-carrier frequency-2500 HZ(2.5 KHz)

waveform-polyphasic sinusoidal waveform

current amplitude-the maximum current amplitude is 100 mA.clinical used at 70 mA.

bursts frequency-50 hz

bursts duration-10 ms

ON/OFF ratio-the on:off ratio is defined as athe ratio of the time during which there is stimulation (contraction)to the time during which there is no stimulation(no contraction)set as 10 ms:10 ms.

duty cycle:-duty cycle is the proportion of on time to the summation of both the on and off time expressed as percentages .for example 10:10 sets up a duty cycle of =10/(10+10) x 100 =50%.russian current produced with duty cycle of 50%.

ramp up & down:-setting the ramp time is very important to evoked contraction similar to muscle the ramp allows gradual increase of intensity with associated gradually increase of muscle contraction.set for 1-2 seconds.

~training protocol with russian current:-the widely and most popular clinical protrocol used with russian current is (10/50/10)which is,

10=muscle contractions,lasting for 10 seconds.
50=off time (no contraction)for 50 seconds
10=cycle repeated for 10 times.

~duration and frequency of treatment:-the recommended duration of treatment is 10 minutes,once fdail;y per week for several weeks(3-6 months)

~electrode placement:-arranged parallel to the direction of muscle fibers so that it is at the estimated line of pull of the muscle.

~time delay switch:-synchronous mode (both channels triggered simultaneously -achieved by not setting time delay)reciprocal mode(channel 1 is on then channel 2 is off -achieved by setting time delay equal to time of channel 1)overlapping mode(channel 2 overlaps with on time and off time of channel 1-achieved by setting time delay more than 1 sec but less than on time of channel 1)

Russian current machine
parameters of russian current

*Physiological effects:-

~the total number of bursts delivered per second.

~russian current has a capacity to depolarized

~sensory nerve fibers-moderate prickling sensation

~motor nerve fibers -tetanic muscle contraction
this contraction is

~painless due to sensory nerve blocked of pain gate.

~allow use of high amplitude:-

~contraction stronger than those generated by voluntary control(voluntary contraction-motor units recruited asynchronously while in electrically evoked muscle contraction motor units fire synchronously)


~post knee ligaments surgery
~post arthroscopic knee surgery
~following ligament sprain
~post casting
~muscle spasm
~strenghthening the muscular system of healthy and athletic persons.


~over the anterior cervical area
~over the lumbar or abdominal area during pregnent
~over haemorrhagic area
~over neoplastic area
~over metalic and electronic implant
~over area of impaired skin sensation*Contra indications:-

~Cardiac pacemakers and Arrhythmias
~Hemorrhagic condition
~Thrombosis and thrombophlebitis (inflammation of wall of vein)
~Early tendon transfer and repair
~Pregnancy: On pelvic, low back and abdomen
~Unconscious patient
~Recent radiotherapy
~Carotid sinus
~Child with mental disturbance
~Infected wound and skin lesion

~over the anterior cervical area
~over the lumbar or abdominal area during pregnent
~over haemorrhagic area
~over neoplastic area
~over metalic and electronic implant
~over area of impaired skin sensation

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About vastralphysiotherapyclinic

Physiotherapist , Samarpan Physiotherapy Clinic, Vastral, Nirant Cross Road, Ahmedabad

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