Our ultrasound machine usually gets a big workout in winter and enjoys a quiet season over the summer. But not this summer. This summer has seen a lot of people with inflammation in the muscles and soft tissues that have responded well to ultrasound therapy and these people are the inspiration behind this post today.
These are the types of things I’ve been treating with ultrasound this summer:
- Relief of muscle spasm and contractures in the shoulder muscles of my swimmers, especially my young swimmers who are doing ocean swimming for the first time.
- Carpal tunnel in the wrists of farmers and mechanics. These often require ongoing treatment every 1 – 3 months depending on the severity of symptoms.
- Bursitis in the hips which I see mainly in female patients who have been doing a lot of driving up and down to Perth.
- Shoulder pain in male patients who used to play football. If there were multiple injuries to the shoulder then there can be pain from shortened tendons and scar tissue. 2 or 3 ultrasound sessions can help to relieve this pain.
Ultrasound therapy is the use of sound waves to treat musculoskeletal problems, particularly in the soft tissues such as muscles, tendons, ligaments and bursas (which are the fatty cushions around the joints). Inflammation in the soft tissues (i.e. from general wear and tear) can cause irritation and pain which then interferes with quality and enjoyment of life. This is where my trusty ultrasound machine comes in.
Ultrasound therapy works by sending ultrasound waves from the machine and into the tissues. The vibration and energy of the sound waves increases the healing rate of the damaged tissues and increases local blood flow. The intensity of the ultrasound energy can be adjusted to suit the needs of the patient and is different for older or for more recent injuries.
I have a few patients who responded very well to ultrasound therapy and have gone on to purchase their own home ultrasound machine for $200. Although the intensity of home ultrasound machines isn’t as strong as professional ultrasound these patients have reported good results in terms of pain reduction and increased movement in the affected area.
If you any questions about ultrasound or feel that it’s something that your body might need then feel free to speak to me ~ Allie