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The research on the magnetic field properties began in 1966 under the Scientific Council for Complex Cybernetic Issues of the Soviet Academy of Sciences. A researcher named Yuri A. Kholodov took the lead in studying the magnetic fields’ effect on humans, which he described in several of his monographs such as Magnetism in Biology and The Human Brain under Electromagnetic Fields. However, the key figure in the history of magneto-therapy is another soviet scientist, Yuri V. Berlin. It was him who developed and tested an innovative medical device, while working as chief medical design engineer at a Soviet defence facility called “Phasotron-NIIR”.
In 1972, one of the leaders of the Soviet medical industry had a stroke causing paralysis of his right arm and leg. Having discussed various possible options of helping the colleague, scientists decided to transmit artificially induced impulses along the nerve fiber that would cause muscle contraction upon reaching the nerve endings. Electric pulse alone was inappropriate for such purposes because of the poor conductivity of the body. Just then Yuri Berlin, a young engineer, suggested using a low-frequency pulse of electromagnetic field which would simulate the duration and rate of the nerve impulse. Working overtime on a tight schedule, he managed to design the proposed device. The results of its application surpassed all expectations.
The novelty was immediately used on the patient and gave an astonishing result: it only took 15 sessions for the functions of the affected limbs to recover. The device was handed over to the hospital, where a full cycle of research was conducted. The doctors confirmed invention of a new type of therapeutic effect produced by electromagnetic field.
Despite the evident success of the innovative device, permanent research work on the effects of electromagnetic fields on humans was not organized until 1985 at “Phasotron”. The new management of the facility established an independent research unit headed by Yuri Berlin for this purpose.
In the 1990s, the team introduced a whole family of magneto-therapy devices into production, the most famous of those being the MAG (from the word ‘magnetic’), which was originally devised as a “family doctor”. Eventually MAG-30 did become a champion among home-used appliances.
The popularity of MAG and other Berlin’s “family doctors” was quite natural. For one thing, these devices appeared to be a very active biological stimulant with an effect similar to that of Eleutherococcus, Asiatic ginseng, shilajit (‘mumiyo’), golden root (also known as Rhodiola rosea). Exposure to electromagnetic fields drastically increases resistance of the human immune system to the development of serious diseases and to physical and nervous overload.
For another thing, magnetic field improves microcirculatory processes and local blood flow, leading to analgesic and anti-inflammatory actions, resorption of inflammations and traumatic edemas, accelerated restoration of damaged tissues.
Thirdly, the “family doctor” does not cause harmful side effects (partly because people live under constant influence of the Earth's magnetic field and are adapted to it); the device has practically no contraindications. It is also important that the use of MAG and its analogues allows to avoid taking potent drugs.
Affordability of treatment with these devices is another valuable advantage.
After successful introduction of MAG-30 into medical practice, it was decided to develop an analogue of a large stationary magneto-therapy device which would retain the same efficiency while being more compact and usable in hospital wards and at home. This is how the history of ALMAG-01 began.
In 2003, Alexander A. Ushakov, chief physiotherapist of the Russian armed forces, proposed to develop a device that would comprise all the functions of the then-existing magneto-therapy devices and would allow to conduct both general and local magneto-therapy with a low-frequency magnetic field. Subsequent research resulted in 2004 in the creation of a model of the POLYMAG-01 device. By 2007, a full research cycle was completed and medical guidelines were approved, after which the device was registered at the Russian Federal Service for Surveillance in Healthcare and supplied to nearly every major medical institution in Russia.
Later on, the experience of POLYMAG-01 usage was summarized, positive therapy results were obtained, the application methods were analyzed, and it was decided to start manufacturing the ALMAG-02 device. Several leading researchers of Ryazan State Medical University took part in its development. The clinical trial sites of Ryazan State Medical University became the basis for presentation of two research papers in which the authors had identified the positive effect of magnetic field on the human sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems illustrated by examples of the POLYMAG-01 device application. Those examples came from the vast practice of clinical use of POLYMAG-01 by Dr. N.E. Larinsky. As a result of the above research, ALMAG-02, a small-type analogue of POLYMAG-01, was created. Its efficiency was further on confirmed by application case reports from various clinical sites.
Following the registration of the POLYMAG-01 device in 2007, leading physiotherapists of the country’s major healthcare facilities (Main Military Clinical Hospital named after N.N. Burdenko, Russian Research Center of Medical Rehabilitation and Balneology, Moscow Regional Research and Clinical Institute “MONIKI” named after M.F.Vladimirsky) began clinical trials aimed at enhancement of targeted applications of POLYMAG and of indications for its use through introduction of new emitters. Those three teams collectively approved optimal design features of the new targeted emitters and tested the treatment methods for ENT diseases, as well as eye and brain disorders – the functions that the device had previously lacked.
ALMAG-01, ALMAG-02 and POLYMAG-01 are constant subjects of optimization and research work performed by highly qualified and strongly motivated specialists of the field.