The exact mechanism of how it works is not well understood. Our best theory has to do with cell membrane “gates.” A nerve cell is just a long chain of gates that open and close when it is stimulated. This allows ions (charged atoms) to pass through the gate. The body normally keeps the gates shut. The EST forces them open for an extended period of time. This allows for increased nutrient import and toxin export in the cell. The anesthetic closes the gates for a long time after the EST. Perhaps this allows time for the cell to heal and use its energy toward cellular repair rather than opening and closing gates or pumping ions.