We have used Ultrasound as a therapeutic modality in chiropractic care for many years. In fact Ultrasound has been used by physical therapists since the 1940s. As the name suggests, Ultrasound is a therapy that uses ultrasonic sound waves. Ultrasound is applied using a round-headed wand and put in direct contact with the patient’s skin
The sound waves that pass through the skin cause a vibration in the tissues being treated. This vibration can cause a deep heating locally though usually no sensation of heat will be felt by the patient. In situations where a heating effect is not desirable, such as a fresh injury with inflammation, the ultrasound wave can be adjusted to not generate heat.
Ultrasound can produce many therapeutic effects. It has been shown to cause increases in tissue relaxation, local blood flow, and scar tissue breakdown. The benefit of increasing blood flow not only helps to increase supply of oxygen but it can also help to reduce local swelling and chronic inflammation. There are some studies that suggest ultrasound may even help promote bone fracture healing. The intensity of the ultrasound is controlled by our therapists depending on the desired effect and depth of penetration.
A typical ultrasound treatment will take from 3-5 minutes depending on the size of the area being treated. Our patients usually feel no discomfort and many will comment that the ultrasound is soothing and enjoyable. We use ultrasound to treat conditions such as tendonitis, non-acute joint pain and swelling, muscle spasm and restricted joint mobility.