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Electrical Modalities

On this page you will find information about Interferential Current, Low Level Laser Therapy, T.E.N.S., Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation, and Ultrasound.

Location: Motion Matters Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Clinic, 170 Laurier Ave. W.

Interferential Current

Treatment equipment

Types: Motion Matters has two Interferential Current (IFC) units - Intelect Legend Stim; EMS Interferential 955

What is it? Our bodies naturally have electric-type energy that flows through us by means of ion flow.

The IFC unit also produces its own energy in the form of two separate medium frequency wave channels. These two channels "interfere" in the body to generate a third frequency channel called the "beat frequency".

The specific beat frequency parameters will be selected by your physiotherapist to achieve the desired therapeutic effect on your condition.

What are the clinical effects?

IFC was introduced to physiotherapists in the mid 1950s, and has been a successful treatment for the management of acute and chronic pain, muscle spasms, oedema, inflammation and low muscle tone.

Low Level Laser Therapy

Types: Motion Matters is equipped with two powerful laser appliances - the compacted Handy laser 50 Sx (50mW, 820nm); new state of the art ULTRA LAZ 800-4 (400mW, 810 nm).

What is it? A laser is an amplifier of light. The letters LASER are an acronym, signifying "light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation."

What are the clinical effects?

  • Speeds soft tissue and joint healing
  • Relieves pain
  • Muscle tension relaxation
  • Acupuncture and trigger point stimulation
  • Nerve stimulation and regeneration
  • Releases contracture
  • Softens and reduces scar tissue
  • Improves microcirculation
  • Decreases acute and chronic inflammation
  • Revascularization

Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation

Types: Motion Matters has four NMES devices - Fast Start II (2 units); Focus (2 units)

What is it? NMES is the therapeutic use of an electrical current over the body to stimulate a specific muscle contraction.

What are the clinical effects?

NMES has a beneficial effect on many aspects of muscle performance such as increased strength and endurance, reduced spasticity and enhanced motor control and learning.

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (T.E.N.S.)

Types: Motion Matters has four T.E.N.S appliances: Codetron, Comfort-Tens, Fast Start II (2 units)

What is it? This treatment method consists of a weak electrical current passing through the surface of the skin via self-adhering electrodes into the nerve fibers.

What are the clinical effects? It decreases acute and chronic pain.

How does T.E.N.S. work on controlling pain? There are two major theories of the effectiveness of T.E.N.S.:

  • Gate Control Theory (Melzak and Wall 1965) that describes the existence of a "gate" between the pain source and the area of the brain that perceives it. Both painful and non-painful sensations pass through this same "gate". Fortunately, the brain can only focus on one of these sensations at a time. Using a T.E.N.S unit causes an overstimualtion of the non-painful sensations (i.e. comfortable electrical current) to be perceived by the brain and "closes the gate" on the perception of painful ones.
  • Release of Endorphins and Enkephalins Theory that is based on the body´s normal release of pain-relieving substances. In the 1970s, much research was done worldwide in this area, particularly on the biochemical and neurological effects of pain perception. Through this, researchers discovered that low-frequency electrical current (2-5 HZ) produced the release of endorphin-enkephalins, resulting in pain suppression.

Ultrasound

Types: Motion Matters has three ultrasound appliances - Sonopuls 590; Intelect Legend Ultrasound (2 units)

What is it? Ultrasound consists of high frequency sound waves that have been transmitted via a series of resonations of a crystal in the transducer of an ultrasound unit.

Generally, therapeutic ultrasound has a frequency of between .07 and 3.3 megahertz (MHz) in order to maximize energy absorption at a depth of 1 to 5cm of soft tissue.

What are the clinical effects?

For over 50 years, ultrasound has been used in the clinical setting for both its thermal and non-thermal physical effects on collagen tissue such as tendons, ligaments, or fascia. Amongst numerous other clinical effects, ultrasound can improve micro-circulation, reduce inflammation, decrease pain and increase tissue temperature.

Our Hours

Monday - Thursday 7 AM - 7 PM
Friday 7 AM - 6 PM
Appointments available upon request