Everyone knows about ultrasound imaging for pregnancy, but did you know it can be used as a therapeutic treatment too? The big difference between ultrasound imaging and therapeutic ultrasound is the frequency; with therapeutic ultrasound usually between 0.8MHz and 3.0MHz. Therapeutic ultrasound has been used by physical therapists since the 1940s and is still widely used for treating soft tissue and bone injury.
How does it work?
Ultrasonic waves, beyond the hearing range of humans, penetrate the skin, gently vibrating and heating the tissues. While this vibration causes deep heating in the tissues, there is usually no heat felt by the patient.
The “magic” of ultrasound is the way it works to gently massage the underlying muscles, tendons and ligaments, softening scar tissue without any added extra strain on the patient. This gentle heating caused by vibrating tissues can increase blood flow to the targeted area, loosen tissue and speed up healing. There is also evidence that suggests ultrasonic waves stimulate cellular processes associated with tissue healing! Ultrasound is usually used along with physiotherapy treatments to further reduce pain, swelling and promote healing in the treatment of common issues like tennis elbow, ankle sprain, tendonitis, rotator cuff, shoulder pain and much much more. Many patients see a decrease in pain after one treatment! Added benefits of ultrasound therapy include:
- Improved healing rates
- Deep heating
- Reduced pain
- Breakdown of scar tissue
- Activate healing process
Want more information on therapeutic ultrasound? Check out our information page here