I had an ultrasound treatment for low back pain. It only took five minutes and I didn't feel any better afterwards. Should I keep getting this treatment?
Ultrasound (US) can be a very effective method of heating deep tissues. Heat from the US
promotes relaxation and improves circulation. Pain relief is often a result of both.
Standard US is applied with an applicator called a soundhead. The soundhead is moved slowly in small circles. Each circle overlaps the last one. A five-minute treatment
is about right for a patch of skin two to three times the size of the soundhead. This gives the tissue underneath time to heat up.
Treating the entire low back area in five minutes is not effective. Be sure and ask your therapist about the treatment. Report your lack of progress, but give it some time. It may take three to five sessions to feel a difference.
Javid Majlesi, MD, and Halil Ünalan, MD. High-Power Pain Threshold Ultrasound Technique
in the Treatment of Active Myofascial Trigger Points: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Case-Control Study. In Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. May 2004. Vol.
85. No. 5. Pp. 833-836.