What is Ultrasound
Ultrasound is the use of inaudible acoustic mechanical vibrations of high frequency that produce thermal and non-thermal physiologic effects on human tissues. The use of ultrasound in therapy is widespread and studies suggest that 54% of all private treatments involve the use of ultrasound. No two injuries are identical what may work for one person may not work for another. So its very important that the therapist understands the biology of wound healing and how electrotherapy interacts with it.
Continuous ultrasound is used to increase tissue temperature and collagen extensibility to decrease joint stiffness and spasm/pain and increase blood flow and produce some mild inflammatory reaction. it is best used for its healing effects. Pulsed ultrasound because of its non-thermal effects should be used when swelling is a concern (e.g. for acute injuries). Before any electrotherapy treatment is given to any patient a full comprehensive history must be taken, this is because there are a number of contraindications to consider before using electrotherapy.
What is it used for?
Therapeutic ultrasound has been applied to an enormous range of conditions with claims of successful outcomes. These include: -
Scar and fibrous tissue Pain relief Inflammatory conditions Can be used to help heal burns Soft tissue injuries Rheumatic disorders Duration of treatment
The superficial area of region to be treated and the stage of the disease dictate the duration of treatment. The more acute the stage of disease the weaker the intensity and the shorter the treatment time required. Chronic conditions call for a higher intensity and longer treatment times.
Treatment should be limited to a maximum of 14. Acute injuries should receive daily-pulsed treatment for the first 6-8 days. Chronic injuries should receive continuous ultrasound every other day.