The basic principle of electrotherapy Interferential Therapy (IFT) is to utilise the strong physiologicaportable interferential effects of low frequency (<250pps) electrical stimulation of nerves without the associated painful and somewhat unpleasant side effects sometimes associated with low frequency stem.
It has been suggested that IFT works in a ‘special way’ because it is ‘interferential’ as opposed to ‘normal’ frequency. The evidence for this special effect is lacking and it is most likely that IFT is just another means by which peripheral nerves can be stimulated. It is relatively a generic means of stimulation – the machine can be set up to act more like a TENS type device or can be set up to behave more like a muscle stimulator – by adjusting the stimulating (beat) frequency. It is often regarded (by patients) to be more acceptable as it generates less discomfort than some other forms of electrical stimulation.