The primary purpose of the ultrasound in medical imaging, but now it goes beyond just ultrasound medical imaging. It’s no longer only a diagnostic modality. Ultrasound devices can be used for therapeutic reasons. Physiotherapists use ultrasound devices primarily for pain relief. Recent research showed that it can also be used for the purpose of healing wounds and fractures faster. We are going to talk about how ultrasound devices can be more than used as just an ultrasound medical imaging.
Therapeutic ultrasound gives out high levels of acoustic output that the doctors can use to focus on a specific region of the patient’s body to heat, ablate, or break up tissue. The piezoelectric effect is used to generate the ultrasound wave. The effect is made by the vibration of crystals within the head of the probe. The vibration that goes through the patient’s body’s skin, causing a vibration in the local soft tissues. That vibration makes heat although the heat won’t be felt by the patient. If there is no need for heat, the ultrasound can be pulsed rather than transmitted continuously.
The Ultrasound Dose
Usually, ultrasound treatment takes about 3 to 5 minutes. If the goal is to break down the scar tissue, the process can take longer. The ultrasound probe should be kept in motion during the treatment so that the patient doesn’t feel any discomfort. Tendonitis, non-acute joint swelling, and muscle spasm are some of the injuries that are treated with ultrasound.
Use of Therapeutic Ultrasound
Local swelling and chronic inflammation can be reduced with the help of the effect of ultrasound through the increase in local blood flow. Some studies have also shown that bone fracture healing is also very plausible. Low-intensity ultrasound devices are used to heal tissues. These types of devices deliver a sound wave between 1MHZ to 3MHZ. The intensity of the ultrasound can be easily adjusted depending on the need. High intensity is used when there is a need to breakdown tissues.
High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) is being researched to be used as a process to modify or destroy abnormal or damaged tissues inside of a human body. This is excellent because the doctors don’t have to cut open or tear the skin to perform this. HIFU is also being researched if it can be used to close wounds or stop bleeding, to temporarily open the blood-brain barrier to let the medication pass through. HIFU is approved by the FDA as a treatment for uterine fibroids, ablation prostate tissues, and reduce pain caused by metastasization of bone.
Achievement of phonophoresis is also possible with the help of ultrasound which is developed by the manufacturers of ultrasound imaging equipment. This is a prudent way to treat patients who are afraid of injections because it’s a non-invasive way of administering medications to tissues below the skin. The ultrasonic energy forces the medication inside the skin. Cortisone is another one of the substances that can be transferred this way.
To conclude, we have to say that therapeutic ultrasound is having good growth and with the recent and future research in this field will only make it grow even more.