What is it?
Real-time Ultrasound is an imaging technology that shows contraction and relaxation of deep muscles in real time. This is similar to looking at a growing baby. Since many of the important muscles that support the spine are difficult or impossible to view from the surface of the body, real-time ultrasound is a valuable tool for diagnosis as well as for teaching.
Studies have shown that with lower back injuries or chronic lower back pain, the activation of transverse abdominus, multifidus and the pelvic floor may become inhibited. Without specific strengthening exercises to reactivate these muscles, recovery from injury may be poor and lead to the development of recurrent lower back pain.
The physiotherapist and client can watch different layers of muscles contract, relax and most importantly look at their muscle contraction timing. This is an accurate way to see if your Core and Pelvic floor are working effectively and is usually performed prior to Pilates sessions beginning.
Real-Time Ultrasound (RTUS) can be used as:
An Assessment tool
- RTUS gives important information about the structure and function of your core muscles, aiding you physiotherapist in making a correct diagnosis.
- It can be particularly helpful in cases of chronic lower back pain, pelvic pain, and women’s health issues.
- Using real-time ultrasound, you and your physiotherapist can both see your muscles working in real time, providing visual feedback you are activating the correct muscles.
Women’s Health Assessment and Treatment
- RTUS is also helpful in addressing pelvic floor muscle dysfunction before and after pregnancy. Studies have shown that gender health issues such as incontinence and urgency are directly related to pelvic floor muscle dysfunction. Real time ultrasound imaging allows the physiotherapist to effectively retrain the pelvic floor without the need for an internal exam.
During the Real Time Ultra sound Assessment:
- A one on one consult in a private physiotherapy treatment room with our trained physiotherapists.
- Your physio will gently hold a probe over the surface of your abdomen. Your physiotherapist will guide you through the activation and relaxation of your core stability and pelvic floor muscles, and you’ll be able to see the ultrasound images on the monitor.
Booking A RTUS Assessment:
- No medical referral is required for a physiotherapist to assess and treat your pelvic floor or stabilising muscles of the lumbar spine with real time ultrasound. We recommend however, that you ensure you have a full bladder (drink 1-2L one hour prior to your appointment) if your pelvic floor is to be assessed.