Ultrasound equipment generates high frequency sound waves that are transferred to a specific body area via a round-headed probe. The sound waves travel deep into tissue (e.g., muscles) creating gentle heat. The sound waves vibrate tissues deep inside the injured area. This creates heat that draws more blood into the tissues. The tissues then respond to healing nutrients brought in by the blood and the repair process begins.
The physical therapist usually applies a hypoallergic gel to the skin, which creates a friction free surface. Using gentle, circular motions with the probe, the therapist administers the treatment, which lasts several minutes. As the probe glides over the skin's surface, sound waves penetrate the skin's surface causing soft tissues to vibrate creating deep heat. In turn, the heat induces vasodilation, drawing blood into the target tissues. Increased blood flow delivers needed oxygen and nutrients, and removes cell wastes. The deep heat helps to relieve pain, inflammation, reduces muscle spasms, and accelerates healing. Depending on the treatment area, range of motion may be increased. Ultrasound is the best form of heat treatment for soft tissue injuries. It is used to treat joint and muscle sprains, bursitis, and tendonitis.
It can be used to help repair tissue after injuries such as a sprain, strain, bruising, tendonitis, or open wounds. It can help to decrease pain and muscle spasms, as well as help to break up scar tissue.
It is not indicated in acute inflammatory conditions where it may serve to exacerbate the inflammatory response
Ultrasound treatment is used to:
Relieve pain and inflammation
Reduce muscle spasms and
Increase range of motion
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