May 23, 2020
Therapeutic ultrasound shouldn’t be confused with diagnostic ultrasound, a tool used to generate images of structures within your body. Therapeutic ultrasound is a treatment modality that uses sound waves above the range of human hearing to promote tissue healing. It may be recommended for people experiencing joint tightness and ligament injuries. It is also often used as a frozen shoulder treatment.
There are two main types of therapeutic ultrasound – thermal and mechanical. Both use sound waves to penetrate tissues but run at different rates.
Thermal ultrasound therapy (also known as deep heating) gives a more continuous transmission of sound waves, resulting in microscopic vibrations. This increases friction and heat between deep tissue molecules, producing warmth. This effect is believed to promote tissue healing by improving cell metabolism.
Mechanical ultrasound therapy (also known as cavitation) relies on sound wave pulses, resulting in the rapid expansion and contraction of gas bubbles around injured tissues. This effect is said to help reduce tissue swelling and inflammation thus, decreasing pain.
Overall, therapeutic ultrasound has been shown to increase healing rates by improving local blood flow and promoting tissue relaxation. The following conditions and orthopedic injuries are commonly treated with ultrasound therapy:
● Myofascial pain
● Muscle tears
● Pain caused by scar tissue
● Frozen shoulder
● Carpal tunnel syndrome
● Sprains and strains
There is some evidence suggesting ultrasound therapy as an effective option for chronic pain related to tissue injuries. It has something to do with the ability of sound waves to improve circulation and tissue extensibility, and increase mobility. It might not work for everyone, but it’s worth a try if you are suffering from unrelenting pain.
During a session, a Dubai physiotherapist applies a conductive gel onto the treatment area and moves an ultrasound transducer (a tool that looks a bit like a microphone) in a small circular motion over the affected body part. Intensity, frequency, and depth of penetration of sound waves are adjusted depending on the severity of the injury.
The procedure usually lasts for around 5 to 10 minutes and is not performed more than once per day. Those who have undergone treatment have reported feeling a slight warming sensation or tingling on the area of focus. If you feel any discomfort, you can report it to your physical therapist right away.
If you are looking for physical therapy for bursitis, joint contracture, or chronic pain conditions, the experts at Scandinavian Physiotherapy Center can help you determine whether ultrasound is the right treatment for you. Call us at +971 4 551 6126 to book an appointment today!