The ReBuilder® is a unique form of TENS. It is designed specifically for treating chronic intractable pain of the feet and/or hands, symptoms often associated with diseases such as peripheral neuropathy and other neurological disorders. Both extremities must be treated simultaneously using a pair of adhesive electrodes or with two identical surface-area separate conductive garments. For the ReBuilder to be used correctly, you will need the two separate points of contact.
In some specific instances, your physician may prescribe only one sock (right or left), or one glove (right or left) to be used with a separate electrode such as a tube for an amputated limb or a large conductive rubber electrode for the lower back or thigh for sciatic problems concurrent with neuropathy.
The surface area of the transdermal signal transfer must be similar. Thus, the need for two conductive garments. One conductive garment alone, one conductive garment and one common surface electrode such as a self-adhesive pad or conductive rubber electrode with a gel will not deliver the signal appropriately. (Unless your physician prescribes different sizes for your particular situation.
Electricity exists as two distinct poles, a positive pole and a negative pole. Just as your car battery has two terminals and your home wiring requires two terminals, any electrical stimulation of the body needs two opposite poles to enable the flow of electrons and wave forms from one pole to the other. If you connect only one electrode, or only one conductive garment to the patient all by itself, nothing will happen because you have not completed the circuit. It is simply a fact of physics. Two connections to the patient are necessary for the ReBuilder to complete the circuit between the extremities.
The ReBuilder's signal is applied with two conductive socks, one right and a separate garment for the left (one on each extremity), in order for the signal to complete its journey from one pole to the other. Then, to complete the electrical circuit, that signal must travel from one foot, up the leg, across the nerve roots of the lumbar region, down the other leg all the way to the opposite foot. (It works similarly when treating the hands, but crosses the spine at the thoracic vertebral level.) This is how the ReBuilder can treat all the nerve paths in the lower extremity simultaneously.
If the physician were to apply the ReBuilder signal with common conductive adhesive pads (usually 1.5 inches square) to the same extremity as is done with common TENS devices, the signal would only travel from one electrode to the other. If, for example, one common TENS electrode is applied to the ankle of the right foot, and the other electrode is applied above the knee of the right foot, then the signal would only travel from the ankle to the area above the knee. No signal would be applied to the foot.
In addition, the area under the 1.5 in by 1.5 inch self adhesive electrode is much too small an area to be effective with the ReBuilder. The ReBuilder requires a much larger surface area under its conductive transdermal garment. If a physician uses the common electrodes, the possibility exists of causing third degree burns under the electrodes, plus not treating the foot or hands effectively.
The danger to the patient increases if the ReBuilder is used with a mismatched set of electrodes, such as only one conductive garment (a sock for the foot for example), and one common self-adhesive pad. The body would allow a full application of signal spread over the large area of the foot within the conductive garment and the amount of electrical signal would therefore be concentrated under the common TENS electrode with the much smaller area under the electrode. This can result in burns under the smaller electrode, and it would interrupt the ReBuilder's internal feedback circuits that enable the ReBuilder to alter its voltage and current flow. The ReBuilder requires a form fitting conductive garment to safely transmit its signal and to ensure that the area under the garment is closely similar in area. The ReBuilder requires two separate garments, one for the right extremity and one for the left extremity.
One more factor must be considered. The ReBuilder manufacturer does a full scale quality control protocol and tests each garment for electrical integrity, sanitation, and ability to stretch sufficiently to enable the patient to put the sock or glove on, but still contract sufficiently to maintain a constant surface area under the garment. The physician must not be tempted to replace the ReBuilder manufactured or approved conductive garments with potentially contaminated overseas products. If any conductive medium comes into contact with the patient's skin, sending electrical signals through that medium, is subject to the physics of transdermal iontophoresis. This means that any electrical signal has the potential to infuse whatever contaminants are in the medium (in this case contaminated, imitation socks) directly into the patient's skin and migrate into the patient's blood, bypassing all the body's protections usually available, such as stomach acid, salivary fluid, etc.
A ReBuilder brand sock has been manufactured with a progressively modulated conductive response via a varying electrical resistance. Any conductive medium has electrical resistance and the ReBuilder brand socks have a built in resistance that matches the normal resistance of the skin at each point. Imitation socks (or gloves) may conduct too much or too little of any signal, thus disrupting the sensitive internal electronics inside the ReBuilder and cause an impaired healing response for the patient. Always use genuine ReBuilder manufactured or approved socks with the ReBuilder for safety and efficacy.
The ReBuilder requires Two Identical Surface-Area, Separate Conductive Garments, one right and one left, to be used on each extremity. The physics of electrical theory demands this.