Real time ultrasound scanning
We are pleased to offer our patients the chance to use real time ultrasound imaging (RTUS) for both the assessment and treatment of the lumbar, abdominal, and pelvic core muscles. This instrument provides valuable knowledge into how the stabilizing muscles of the core are functioning for patients with low back pain, pelvic girdle pain, and / or urinary incontinence or prolapse.
The Fundamentals of RTUS
Ultrasound imaging involves the transmission of sound waves into the body. Sound waves reflect from tissue boundaries that they encounter. The signals are collected and displayed as images. Real time Ultrasound Imaging allows the Physiotherapist to observe movement of the muscles, in real time. Valuable insight is realized as to how the deep pelvic floor muscles are working. The Physiotherapist can then analyze the relevance in the overall picture the patient presents. This is also an invaluable tool for the patient as it is the only time that they will actually be able to see what their pelvic floor muscles are doing – or not as the case may be!
Current research demonstrates that the most common muscular problem in clients with low back, neck or pelvic girdle pain, is not weakness, but more so a loss of the proper succession or co-ordination of muscle contraction. This is an insufficiency in motor control and largely affects the deep stabilizing muscles. These core muscles are essential for stabilizing the spine and pelvis and should tighten prior to any movement or compression. Ultrasound Imaging allows Physiotherapists to observe the function of these deep muscles to make sure they are doing what they are believed to do during routine tasks.
When is RTUS used?
As well as playing an important role in assessment, ultrasound imaging is used as biofeedback for re-educating the proper co-ordination and succession of muscle contraction during exercise. You cannot strengthen a muscle that your brain is not using! You will tend to use the muscles that are working incorrectly and at the wrong time. RTUS teaches you how to switch on the correct muscles at the correct time and makes sure that you are tightening them correctly.
Katrina is trained in the use of ultrasound imaging and integrates this tool into all of her treatment plans. It is a useful addition for both the assessment and treatment of muscles difficult for both Physiotherapist and patient to feel and observe during functional tasks. RTUS changes a formerly difficult concept into an exciting visual experience designed to assist your rehabilitation.
Katrina uses the RTUS with every patient that she sees whether their issue is one of incontinence or prolapse or during the Post-natal MOT sessions. It is without doubt an exceptional piece of equipment and every patient states how incredibly useful it is.
Bladder via abdomen