What is Real-time Ultrasound Physiotherapy?
Real-time ultrasound physiotherapy utilises an ultrasound machine to assist with the assessment and treatment of certain conditions. It provides real time imaging of what your muscles are doing as they are contracting and relaxing while performing certain exercises and movements.
Benefits of Real-time Ultrasound Physiotherapy
Real-time ultrasound physiotherapy can be used for any muscle retraining; however, it is most often used for the rehabilitation of low back pain and pelvic health (http://galwayphysioclinic.ie/real-time-ultrasound-in-pelvic-health/). Low back pain can often be related to poor core stability and/or strength. The core muscles include the transverse abdominus, internal and external oblique, and multifidus. Together, these muscles act like a corset to provide spinal stability. Activating and using these muscles correctly can be difficult as the movement is very small. To treat low back pain typically, core strengthening exercises would be prescribed, however it can be quite difficult to feel if these muscles are working efficiently and whether the exercises are being performed correctly. For this reason, the core muscles are often assessed utilising real-time ultrasound to give the patients the ability to visualise these muscles contract, relax and most importantly look at the muscle contraction and size. Using real-time ultrasound gives you instant visual feedback on how you are activating these muscles and can be an extremely useful tool for retraining correct motor patterns.