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A medical treatment used to drive positive or negative ions into a tissue, in which two electrodes are placed in contact with tissue, one of the electrodes being a pad of absorbent material soaked with a solution of the material to be administered, and a voltage is applied between the electrodes.



(also ionotherapy, ionic medication, medical ionization), a procedure in physical therapy that uses a direct electric current to introduce drugs into the body through the skin or mucous membranes. Iontophoresis increases the sensitivity of the receptors to the drugs, which retain all their pharmacological properties during the procedure.

The major feature of iontophoresis is the pronounced and prolonged therapeutic effect of low doses of drugs introduced through a specific skin “depot.” The procedure also permits local action in certain pathological conditions, for example, local vascular disorders that hamper the entry of a drug into a pathological focus from the blood. Several drugs can be used at the same time. A pulsating current of constant direction is used in some cases to increase the therapeutic efficacy of the method.

The sources of current and the method of application are the same as for galvanization (seeGALVANIZATION). Two electrodes with pads moistened in a solution of the drugs are placed on the skin, or one of them is inserted into a nostril, ear, vagina, or some other body cavity. In some cases a small cup with a solution of the drugs is used instead of a pad; a carbon electrode is immersed in the cup. Iontophoresis is used in the treatment of diseases of the central and peripheral nervous systems, disorders of the organs of movement and support, and gynecological diseases.


Ulashchik, V. S. Teoriia i praktika lekarstvennogo elektroforeza. Minsk, 1976.
Spravochnikpofizioterapii. Moscow, 1976.


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References in periodicals archive ?
Iontophoresis is based on the constant electric current to run charged drug molecules over the skin by means of electrophoresis as well as electroosmosis [7].
Iontophoresis has several advantages as a treatment technique in that it is a painless, sterile, noninvasive technique for introducing ions into the tissue, which has been demonstrated to have positive effect on the healing process.
Dogruk Kacar S1, Ozuguz P, Eroglu S, Polat S, Karaca S Treatment of primary hyperhidrosis with tap water iontophoresis in paediatric patients: a retrospective analysis.
Keep in mind that many insurance companies consider other treatments, including iontophoresis and onabot-ulinumtoxinA to be medically necessary only when topical aluminum chloride or other extra-strength antiperspirants are ineffective or result in a severe rash, he added.
The chief disadvantage of iontophoresis is that it is labor intensive, but eventually, many patients can step down to two or three 20- to 30-minute sessions per week, then perhaps once-weekly maintenance therapy, she said.
Of the 17 studies included, 9 evaluated lasers (NdYag, GaA1As or Er, Cr:YSGG), 6 assessed a glutaraldehyde-containing varnish (Gluma, Heraeus Dental), 3 evaluated a chlorhexidine and thymol-containing varnish (Cervitec Plus, Ivoclar Vivadent), a 3% potassium oxalate gel (Oxa-Gel, ArtDent) and/or an adhesive bonding agent (SE Bond and Protect Liner F) and 2 assessed the efficacy of 2% sodium fluoride (NaF) iontophoresis therapy.
The patient participated in a 3-week physical therapy program consisting of a 2% acetic acid iontophoresis treatment followed by pulsed ultrasound and mild ROM movements.
Sweat testing by pilocarpine iontophoresis using the Wescor Macroduct Sweat Collection System (Wescor, Inc, Logan, Utah) method is used in Texas Children's Hospital.
In these patients, the pilocarpin iontophoresis test is negative.
Conclusion Tap water iontophoresis is a safe, effective, inexpensive and affordable treatment modality for palmoplantar hyperhidrosis.
Fluoride such as stannous fluoride, sodium fluoride and fluoride iontophoresis, glass ionomers resins, cyanoacrylates and corticosteroids.
The authors also take the opportunity here to discuss delivery systems, including the technique of iontophoresis.