Ultrasound therapy uses sound waves generated through a transducer head (which looks a bit like a microphone) to penetrate soft tissues. Sound waves cause microscopic vibrations in the deep tissue molecules, increasing heat and friction. The warming effect encourages healing in the soft tissues by increasing the metabolism at the level of the tissue cells.
If you have myofascial pain, or have a chronic strain or sprain that has not resolved, or scar tissue that reduces your range of motion, it will likely respond to ultrasound therapy.
How Ultrasound Therapy Is Performed
Your therapist will select a small surface area to work on for anywhere from five to 10 minutes. Gel is applied either to the transducer head or to your skin, which helps the sound waves evenly penetrate the skin. During your ultrasound therapy treatment, your therapist will continually move the transducer head over and around the selected area.
Will I Feel Anything During Ultrasound Therapy?
Some people feel a mild pulsing during ultrasound therapy, while others may feel slight warmth in the skin. Don’t be surprised, however, if you feel nothing at all, apart from the cold gel on your skin. If the area being treated is especially sensitive to touch, you could possibly feel discomfort as the transducer head passes over. Ultrasound therapy, however, should not be painful.
Conditions Treated with Therapeutic Ultrasound
- Golfer’s Elbow
- Tennis Elbow
- Frozen Shoulder
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Scar tissue adhesions
- Reduced range of motion from previous injury
- Complex regional pain syndrome
- Myofascial pain syndrome