Electrotherapy uses the force of electrical currents or electrical impulses to activate and enhance the natural healing process of the body. Depending on the situation low, medium or high frequency electricity is used, all of which are easily tolerated. Electrical energy can be applied directly as well as indirectly by transforming electrical energy into heat or mechanical energy.
The therapist uses electrotherapy to treat acute and chronic pain (electrical impulses of low and medium frequency), peripheral and central paralysis (electrical impulses of low and medium frequency), impairment of the vegetative nervous system (low frequency electrical impulses), incontinence (electrical impulses combined with biofeedback) and tinnitus (electrical impulses in form of a pillow electrode).
The goals of the electrotherapy include
Electrotherapy supports physical therapy and is prescribed by a physician.
Ultrasound therapy is a form of electrotherapy and describes a clinical treatment where alleviation of pain and support of spontaneous healing is achieved through ultrasound. Frequences between .8 and 3 mhz are used in ultrasound therapy.
During the ultrasound treatment a transducer is smoothly and slowly moved over the afflicted area that has been covered with contact gel. It is important to precisely delineate the area to be treated and to treat a maximum of three areas per treatment session. The treatment lasts one to two minutes per area. In the case of chronic illnesses the treatment may be extended to up to ten minutes.
The ultrasound treatment has a mechanical and thermic effect on body tissue. The mechanical effect consists of vibration. The ultrasound pressure wave causes the treated tissue to compress and expand, comparable to the effects of a deep tissue massage. The thermic effect consists of the development of warmth in the treated area.
Ultrasound therapy may be used in the following situations:
Ultrasound therapy supplements physical therapy and is prescribed by a physician.