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Number of Treatment Sessions for Ultrasound

Dawn T. Gulick, PT, PhD, ATC, CSCS

February 4, 2016

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Question

Is there a recommended number of treatments to maximize therapeutic effect? Do you have any recommendations/suggestions?

Answer

No, effectiveness should not be thought of in the number of treatments but rather the effectiveness of each individual treatment.  Thus, treating long enough, at a high enough intensity (patient reports feeling warmth), & a small enough (2-3x the size of the sound head) treatment area to increase the tissue temperature & increase the viscoelastic properties of the tissue.  I believe ultrasound should be addressed just like any other treatment, i.e. if you do not see changes in 3-4 treatment sessions, you should re-evaluate and/or select another modality.


dawn t gulick

Dawn T. Gulick, PT, PhD, ATC, CSCS

Dawn T. Gulick, PhD, PT, ATC, CSCS, is a Professor of Physical Therapy at Widener University in Chester Pennsylvania.  She has been teaching for > 20 years.  Her areas of expertise are orthopedics, sports medicine, modalities, and medical screening.  As a clinician, she has owned a private orthopedic/sports medicine practice.  She also provides athletic training services from the middle school to elite Olympic/Paralympic level.  As a member of the Olympic Sports Medicine Society, Dr. Gulick has provided medical coverage at numerous national and international events.  As a scholar, Dr. Gulick is the author of 4 books (Ortho Notes, Screening Notes, Sport Notes, Mobilization Notes), 4 book chapters, > 50 peer-reviewed publications, and > 100 professional and civic presentations.  She is the developer of a mobile app called iOrtho+ (Apple, Android, & PC versions).  


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