Ultrasound & Shoulder Injuries
Ultrasound is a useful diagnostic tool for soft tissue injuries i.e. muscle and tendon injuries, particularly of the shoulder. It can also be used as a therapy, in conjunction with other Osteopathic principles and modalities. When appropriate, Ultrasound therapy is commonly used by our Osteopaths, as a helpful adjunct to Osteopathic manual techniques.
What Is Ultrasound Therapy?
Ultrasound Therapy is the use of sound waves to treat musculoskeletal problems, especially inflammation. Based on the principle of ‘stimulating’ tissue with sound waves, ultrasound has been shown to cause:
– Increase in tissue relaxation
– Increase in local blood flow- can be used to help reduce local swelling and chronic inflammation
– Aids scar tissue breakdown
Often used to treat:
– Fresh injury with acute inflammation
– Joint Sprains
– Scar tissue e.g. injuries, post-surgery
– Muscle spasm
Common Shoulder Injuries
- Rotator cuff: A group of four tendons that stabilise the shoulder joint. Each of these tendons attaches to a muscle (Subscapularis, Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus and Teres Minor) that moves the shoulder in a specific direction. Damage to the rotator cuff is one of the most common causes of shoulder pain.
- Partial Tear
- Complete Tear
- Calcifications: A build-up of Calcium deposits in the tendon, causing chemical irritation, increased pressure, reduced space between the rotator cuff and the acromion (which can cause subacromial impingement when lifting the arm overhead), as well as affecting the normal function of the rotator cuff.
- Subacromial Bursitis: A bursa is a closed, fluid-filled sac that functions as a gliding surface to reduce friction between tissues of the body. When a bursa becomes inflamed, the condition is known as bursitis. Subacromial bursitis reduces the space between the rotator cuff and the acromion (which can cause subacromial impingement when lifting the arm overhead).
- Frozen Shoulder: Also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a common condition in which the articular shoulder capsule (a sac of ligaments surrounding the joint) swells and stiffens, restricting its mobility.
- Labral Tear: A tear in the ring of firm fibrous tissue, called the labrum, that helps stabilize the shoulder joint.
What Are The Benefits Of Ultrasound?
– A typical ultrasound treatment will take from 3-4 minutes depending on the size of the area being treated
– Painless and non-invasive
– Reduces pain
– Reduces muscle spasm
– Speeds up healing
We use ultrasound therapy for many tendon and ligament injuries.
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