Therapeutic ultrasound is a treatment modality commonly used in chiropractic and physical therapy. It is used to provide deep heating to soft tissues in the body. These tissues include muscles, tendons, joints, and ligaments.
Therapeutic ultrasound is not to be confused with diagnostic ultrasound, which is an ultrasound that is used to see the inside of the body, such as checking on a fetus during pregnancy.
Therapeutic ultrasound is used primarily for two different effects: the deep heating treatment and non-thermal uses action of these bubbles helps speed cellular processes and improves the healing of injured tissue. This process is non-invasive and pain-free.
Ultrasound is often used to provide deep heating to soft tissue structures in the body. Deep heating tendons, muscles, or ligaments increases circulation to those tissues, which is thought to help the healing process. Increasing tissue temperature with ultrasound is also used to help decrease pain. Deep heating can also be used to increase the "stretchiness" of muscles and tendons that may be tight.
Ultrasound introduces energy into the body. This energy causes microscopic gas bubbles around your tissues to expand and contract rapidly, a process called cavitation. It is theorized that the expansion and contraction of these bubbles help speed cellular processes and improves the healing of injured tissue. This process is non-invasive and pain-free.