FAQ

Shockwave Therapy - Frequently Asked Questions

TENS - Frequently Asked Questions

Maternity TENS - Frequently Asked Questions

ULTRASOUND - Frequently Asked Questions

EMS (Electrical Muscle Stimulation) - Frequently Asked Questions

IFT (Interferential Therapy) - Frequently Asked Questions

Incontinence - Frequently Asked Questions

What is Shockwave?

A shockwave is an acoustic wave which carries high energy to painful spots and fibrous or mayo-skeletal tissues with sub-acute, sub-chronic and chronic conditions. Shock waves accelerate the healing process in the body, they stimulate metabolism and improve blood circulation. Damaged tissue gradually regenerates and eventually heals. Many years of experience have confirmed that pathological alterations of tendons, ligaments, capsules, muscles and bones – in other words the root causes of your pain – can be eliminated systematically with this innovative therapy approach.

What is Shockwave Therapy?

Shockwave therapy is a series of high-energy percussion to the affected area.

How does VihaWAVE Shockwave Therapy work?

VihaWAVE shockwave therapy works on electromagnetic field principle. Electromagnets in the applicator accelerate a heavy projectile.

Principle

A heavy, electromagnetically accelerated, ballistic projectile transfers its kinetic energy to a transmitter head in the applicator. The kinetic energy is transformed into impact energy in the applicator head. Shockwaves result and spread out radially from the contact area into the desired treatment region of the body. The projectile hits the applicator and creates a unique radial wave which is penetrating the tissue.

What conditions can be treated?

Areas where there are major connective tissue attachments to bone: plantar fasciitis, rotator cuff injuries, tennis and golfer’s elbow, trochanteric bursitis, Achilles tendinopathy, muscular trigger points to name few.

What are the benefits of Shockwave?

This therapy works without the use of drugs. It stimulates the body’s natural self-healing processes. There is usually an immediate reduction of pain and better movement. Shockwave may also eliminate your need for a cortisone shot or surgery.

How long is each treatment?

A treatment session applies approximately 2000 shots and takes about 10- 15 minutes.

How many treatments are needed?

Individual Shockwave Therapy treatments usually involve delivering about 2,000 Shockwave pulses or “shots” per treatment area. This takes about 5 minutes. Most conditions require between 3 and 6 treatments in total. Normally the treatment protocol recommends between 1 and 3 treatments per week. The patient’s body requires “rest & repair” time between treatments in order to allow for natural, accelerated healing.

Does it hurt?

It can be uncomfortable. Different patients have different tolerances, but it is usually well tolerated. A patient may feel painful during the treatment but the pain subsides gradually. No pain, no gain principle is applicable here.

Will it hurt after the treatment?

The patient my leave pain-free but will experience a throbbing pain later (24-48 Hrs.). But as the pain reduces the patient will realise the difference in the intensity of pain of the injured muscle. An inflammatory response is requires so refrain from using ice or anti-inflammatory medicines.

How long before the Patient Reports any Improvement?

Unlike many other forms of therapy, Shockwave Therapy generates virtually immediate positive results. Even after just one treatment, patients usually report;

  • A significant reduction in pain.
  • Improved Mobility (range of motion).
  • More normalized muscle tone.
  • Muscle “knots” or tightness are usually gone or noticeably reduced & relaxed.

Are there any contra-indications?

Yes, the following:

  • Cortisone injection within the last 6 weeks
  • Hemophilia or any blood coagulation disorder
  • Blood thinner medication ( eg. Heparin, Coumadin)
  • Heart or circulatory problems (Thrombosis)
  • Growing children (Growth Plates)
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Pregnancy

Shockwave is generally not applied to target areas located above air filled tissue (lungs), large nerves and blood vessels, the spinal column or the head.

What are the advantages of Shockwave therapy?

Shockwave therapy is a recent development using modern technology that is used successfully by healthcare providers that specialize in musculoskeletal disorders. As compared to other treatment methods, the advantages are:

  • Quickly reduces pain
  • No medication is needed
  • Avoids surgery and anaesthesia
  • No side effects
  • Accelerates healing
  • Effective for chronic conditions
  • Unique and powerful

How Can VihaWAVE Shockwave Therapy Help Me & My Clinic?

Treat More Patients

Shockwave treatments take about 5 - 10 minutes. This provides you the opportunity to treat more patients per day and offer real solutions for conditions that may not have responded well to other forms of therapy. For chronic musculoskeletal and calcification indications, no treatment is more effective than VihaWAVE Shockwave therapy.

Improve Patient Retention

Shockwave Therapy is exceptionally effective and patients respond very quickly to the treatment. Patients often report improvements of up to 80-90% in just 2-3 sessions. This means the average patient is more likely to stay on their scheduled Treatment Plan, and even look forward to their next appointment.

Grow Your Clinic by Acquiring More Referrals Patients

Happy patients refer! Providing fast, long-term solutions to chronic conditions, gives patients the confidence to refer you to their friends and family. Professional Colleagues will inform your neighbouring colleagues about the conditions that respond to Shockwave Therapy which can open the opportunity for you to establish your Clinic as the local Referral “Hub” for this treatment option.

What makes VihaWAVE superior?

  • High Definition, Colour Touch Screen
  • Multi-lingual interface allows you to pick the language you want to work in.
  • Treatment Encyclopedia with Preset Protocols- Protocols are represented both visually and with text instructions on screen.
  • Total Control Modify any existing protocol or design your own
  • No Messy Air Compressor – There are no heavy, messy air compressors to drag around, listen to, maintain or drain which also makes VihaWAVE light weight and portable
  • Ergonomically designed Applicator - creates less strain on the therapist and allows for one-handed use
  • Omni-directional foot switch for optimum control – Foot switch triggers the applicator enabling the therapist to concentrate his hand position on the treatment.
  • Multiple applicator head sizes included and simple to change
  • SD Card Slot available for memory backup

What is TENS? (Definition-Intended Use)

Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a pain relief therapy where a TENS device transmits gentle, electrical impulses through your skin via self-adhesive electrode pads positioned on or around the painful area to reduce pain due to chronic or acute ailments linked to muscles, joints & nerves using our body’s natural defence technique to eliminate pain.

How does TENS provide pain relief? (Pain Definition-Pain Pathway-Stimulation result)

Pain is experienced when pain receptors stimulate sensory nerves which deliver the pain signal to the brain. So, TENS device induces gentle stimulation through electrical impulses via electrodes that results in either of the two mechanisms to reduce perception of pain.

Pain Gate

Stimulation of strong sensory signal will block pain signals travelling towards the brain via spine. This mechanism results in closure of ‘Pain Gate’ blocking the pain signals to reach the brain & hence we do not feel pain. In effect, signals from TENS device overrides the slow pain signals to the brain.

Endorphin release

Stimulation of motor nerves to produce small repetitive muscle contraction is perceived by the brain as exercise which promotes the release of endorphins (body’s natural pain killer) which builds up for about 40mins to reach maximum level.

This mechanism results in pain relief that lasts for hours after the treatment session.

Who can use it? (Indications-Contraindications)

TENS can be used to relieve pain for several conditions, most often to treat muscle, joint, or bone problems that occur with conditions such as:

  • Arthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Osteo-Arthritis
  • Post-Operative Pain
  • Lumbago
  • Sciatica
  • Sports Injury
  • Sprains
  • Skeletal Pain
  • Muscular Shoulder Aches
  • Muscle Ache
  • Lower Back Pain
  • Tooth ache
  • Neck Pain
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Foot Pain
  • Knee Pain
  • Back Pain
  • Leg Pain
  • Joint Pain
  • Chest Pain
  • General Pain
  • Chronic Pain
  • Neuralgia
  • Whiplash
  • Phantom Limb Pain
  • Migraines
  • Period Pain
  • Cancer Pain
  • Rheuma Nausea
  • Fibromyalgia

However, certain daily activities or medical conditions can contraindicate, or make it inadvisable to use TENS machine for individuals having issues such as:

  • Heart Diseases
  • Implanted Devices
  • Seizures/Convulsions
  • Dermatological conditions
  • Metallic Pins/Implants
  • Disoriented Patients

What is the dosage or treatment duration?

The TENS machine can be used for as long as desired, typically 30 minutes up to 2 hours, several times a day if needed. However, the dosage or treatment depends upon the intensity i.e. frequency of impulses delivered which varies depending on the condition to be treated.

Is TENS a safe treatment? (Effect of Treatment-How is it better than drugs)

Conventional pain killers work on a chemical level by either inhibiting the production of inflammatory substances in the brain and the body which ends up affecting different bodily functions as well or target the sensory receptors which ends up in various other side-effects such as vomiting, nausea, constipation, diarrhoea, reduced appetite, headache, and dizziness, rash and drowsiness or induce withdrawal symptoms if used extensively.

Experts generally consider TENS to be totally safe, easy to use & better alternative to pain killers.

TENS is simple and easy to use drug free method of pain relief. It won’t interact with other medications hence can be used in combination with other therapies.

TENS appears to be free of any side effects except for occasional irritation where the electrodes are applied to the skin. Once programmed, it is easy to apply, and can be worn during most activities.

It is used extensively and recommended by sports coaches, physiotherapy, pain clinics, doctors and other medical practitioners.

When can TENS not be used?

Before purchasing and using any of our TENS units, always consult your medical practitioner for advice.

CAUTIONS & WARNINGS

SIDE EFFECTS - There are no known side effects to TENS use and long-term TENS use is not harmful.

COMPLICATIONS - These can arise but are very rare.

Do NOT

  • Ignore any allergic reaction to the electrodes. If a skin irritation develops, discontinue use and consult a doctor or medical professional
  • Apply electrodes to broken or irritated skin
  • Apply electrodes to skin which does not have normal sensation. If the skin is numb, you will not be able to feel the full effects of the intensity being used and therefore may harm your skin

GENERAL PRECAUTIONS

Do NOT

  • Immerse your TENS unit in water or place it close to excessive heat
  • Attempt to open up the TENS unit. There are no user-serviceable parts inside
  • Use rechargeable batteries, as the voltage is insufficient.
  • Mix old and new batteries. Be sure to dispose of old batteries safely, and always used the correct batteries as suggested in your user manual

Always remove batteries from your TENS machine if the unit is unlikely to be used for a long period.

Do NOT use TENS under any the following circumstances:

  • If you have a heart pacemaker or have a heart rhythm problem
  • If you have epilepsy
  • During the first six months of pregnancy
  • When driving or operating machinery
  • If you are suffering from acute, feverish or infectious diseases
  • Near heart monitors or alarms
  • To mask or relieve undiagnosed pain

Do NOT place electrodes:

  • On the carotid arteries in the front of your neck
  • Over your eyes
  • Across the front of the head
  • On the abdomen if you are pregnant
  • On the heads of children under 12
  • Near malignant tumors

Do NOT start your TENS treatment until the cause and source of pain has been diagnosed by a medical practitioner.

If you are in any doubt about any of these warnings, you MUST consult your medical adviser.


Why should I use Maternity TENS?

Maternity TENS machines have an excellent reputation as one of the safest, most effective forms of modern pain control available to women during childbirth. Midwives recommend Perfect MamaTENs as the machines are safe to use and enable mothers to remain mobile and upright during labour; aiding the descent and dilation whilst providing a more natural, drug-free form of pain relief. It’s probably most effective during the early stages, when many women experience low back pain.

Can I use a standard TENS unit for Labour?

The simple answer is NO.

Although ordinary TENS and maternity TENS work in the same way, ordinary TENS machines are not specifically designed for maternity use.

There are several important, practical differences:

  • BOOST BUTTON - When a contraction occurs, you need to be able to quickly change the way the TENS operates, and then be able to change it back at the end of the contraction. Unlike normal TENS units, the Maternity TENS has a special ‘boost’ button which quickly adjusts the settings when you need them.
  • PROGRAM SETTINGS - Our maternity TENS have special settings for each stage of labour. You can change the settings at the touch of just one button. With an ordinary TENS unit, you would need to adjust several settings as your labour progresses – a more difficult operation in an extremely stressful situation.
  • INTENSITY CONTROLS - Most TENS units have a separate intensity control for each lead. Our maternity units have one intensity control for both leads to make things simpler.
  • LARGE ELECTRODE PADS - In labour the pain is widespread. You need to cover a large area to get effective pain relief. If you do not have the special larger pads which are supplied with the maternity TENS units, then the pain relief provided will not be as effective.

In summary, it is much safer and easier to use Maternity TENS units during labour as they are specifically designed to suit the needs of pregnant women, and clinically tested to ensure the up most effectiveness in providing drug-free pain relief during childbirth.

What is the difference between General TENS & Maternity TENS?

General TENS can be used after 36 weeks of pregnancy with doctor’s approval for back-pain, foot pain and general body pain.

Our Maternity TENS units use TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation) to relieve pain by a) helping the body to release natural painkillers (called endorphins), and b) by blocking pain signals to the brain.

Unlike general TENS machines the Perfect MamaTENS Maternity TENS machine has preset programs which are specifically designed to help alleviate Labor pains than general pain. It helps to relieve pain through each stage of labour.

It offers ‘boost’ feature which allows rapid increase in intensity for additional pain relief during contractions.

Many mid-wives and obstetricians recommend use of maternity TENS since it enables mothers to remain mobile & upright during labour aiding the descent & dilation process as compared to drug based therapies.

Many women find this level of control incredibly empowering as it allows them to be completely in tune with their body's needs, enhancing their level of pain relief exactly when they need it; something that isn't always possible with drug based therapies

What are the Advantages of Perfect MamaTENS?

The Perfect MamaTENS machine also offers a boost button which allows Mums-to-be to rapidly increase the intensity to provide additional pain relief during contractions.

  • Safe for mother and baby
  • Drug-free
  • Recommended by midwives and GPs
  • Easy-to-use
  • 9 out of 10 women find TENS helpful in labour
  • Mum-to-be remain in control
  • Can be used from the onset of labour, helping with transition from home to hospital
  • Mum-to-be can remain mobile
  • Can be safely used in conjunction with analgesics such as pethidine or standard gas and air
  • Can be used to manage after birth pain
  • Can be used for post-episiotomy pain
  • Suitable for general back ache post pregnancy

How to use the Maternity TENS?

Four electrode pads are placed onto the back; 2 just below the bra line and 2 on the lower back. These electrode pads omit small electrical impulses along the spine, blocking pain signals sent to the brain during labour. It helps moms to manage their contractions from the moment labour starts, keeping them in control.

Maternity TENS


What is therapeutic Ultrasound? (Definition-Intended Use)

It is a therapeutic deep heating modality that uses ultrasonic waves (at a frequency of 1-3MHz) which are made to penetrate through the skin using round-headed probe applied with ultrasound gel to cause local soft tissue vibration.

This vibration or cavitation causes deep heating of tissues to cause increase in healing rates, tissue relaxation, local blood flow, and scar tissue breakdown without the sensation of heat felt by the patient. It can also be useful to achieve phonophoresis to enhance the delivery of topically applied drugs.

How does therapeutic Ultrasound provide pain relief?

Ultrasound waves create the effect of deep heat in muscles and joints. The deep heat of ultrasound increases the blood flow, increases the tensile strength of connective tissue structure, speeds up the rate of healing & enhances the quality of the tissue repair to the area being treated.

Ultrasound waves trigger chemically mediated events that lead to the production of scar tissue that constitutes as an effective material to restore the continuity of the damaged tissue.

When can it be used?

It can be used for several conditions, for relief of pain and in cases where joints have been tightened that occur with conditions such as:

  • Capsulitis
  • Calcific Bursitis
  • Myositis
  • Soft Tissue Injuries
  • Sports Injury
  • Bone Fracture
  • Dermal Ulcer
  • Plantar Wart
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Non-septic Periarthritis
  • Tensosynovitis
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Chronic Sprains
  • Muscle Spasms
  • Calcific Tendinitis
  • Nerve Entrapment

What are its Contraindications?

However, certain daily activities or medical conditions can contraindicate, or make inadvisable, the use of Ultrasound therapy for individuals having issues such as:

  • Heart Diseases
  • Implanted Devices
  • Endoprostheses
  • Pregnancy
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis
  • Impaired Circulation
  • Cancerous Lesions
  • Developing Epiphyseal Junction

How does Ultrasound Therapy work?

Ultrasound is applied using a round-headed wand that is put in direct contact with the patient’s skin. Ultrasound gel must be used on all surfaces of the head in order to allow the transmission of the ultrasonic waves which cannot travel through air.

What is the treatment duration?

A typical ultrasound treatment will take from 3-5 minutes. In cases where scar tissue breakdown is the goal, this treatment time can be much longer. During the treatment the head of the ultrasound probe is kept in constant motion. If kept in constant motion, the patient should feel no discomfort at all.

What can I expect during the treatment?

While receiving an ultrasound treatment, most likely some people will not feel anything happening, except perhaps a slight warming sensation or tingling around the area being treated.


What is EMS? (Definition-Intended Use)

Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS) is a rehabilitative therapy where an EMS machine transmits electrical impulses through skin to evoke muscle contraction. These muscle contractions retrain the muscles, strengthen & improve their effectiveness & tone. It is most commonly used to treat muscular atrophies.

In sports, it is used to improve performance, training strength & endurance of players & athletes.

It is also considered in a range of cosmetic treatments for cosmetic muscle toning to achieve muscle tone, micro-lifting, plumping, alleviation of wrinkles, firming etc.

How does EMS work? (Pain Definition-Pain Pathway-Stimulation result)

EMS machine generates low voltage electrical impulses designed to mimic the effect of action potential on muscle through skin electrodes. These electrical impulses are delivered to a specific motor nerve which in-turn stimulates a group of muscles in direct proximity to the area where electrodes are applied.

Muscle contraction helps to re-educate a group of muscles for rehabilitative purpose. Muscle tone & efficiency is linked with the characteristics of muscles.

Electrical muscle contractions should be combined with simultaneous voluntary muscular activity to achieve the best results possible. Always seek medical advice before using EMS to ensure you are receiving the best treatment for your condition.

According to Trophic effect, muscle characteristics like strength, endurance & power changes according to its use. Different frequencies have different effects:

Low (1-10 Hz) frequencies coupled with long impulse times, for example, have a purifying and relaxing effect through individual contractions, whereby the circulation in the treated muscle is simultaneously improved and removal of metabolic end products is supported (lymphatic drainage). The oxygen supply to the muscle is improved.

Medium (20-50 Hz) frequencies can put a high level of strain on the muscle, thus promoting the muscular structure, by means of a rapid succession of contractions (fibrillation).

When can it be used?

It can be used for several conditions such as:

  • Neuromuscular Facilitation
  • Post-Operative Muscle Weakness
  • Reduced Spasticity
  • Increasing Range of Motion
  • Retardation Of Disuse Atrophy
  • Post Stroke Rehabilitation
  • Joint/Ligament Reconstruction
  • Joint Replacements
  • Strokes
  • Head Injuries
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Guillain-Barre Syndrome
  • Spinal Injuries
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Tendon Repairs
  • Scoliosis

What are its Contraindications?

  • Do not use if the patient has a heart pacemaker or have a heart rhythm problem. Electrical stimulation in the direct vicinity of a pacemaker may affect some models. If electrical stimulation is applied on the front of the neck this can affect your heart rate. Very strong stimulation across the chest may cause an extra heartbeat.
  • Do not use if the patient has epilepsy. Electrical Stimulation may affect seizure threshold.
  • Do not use if patient is pregnant or attempting to become pregnant. It is not known whether electrical stimulation may affect foetal development.
  • Do not use on the abdomen in the later stages of pregnancy. Stop use immediately if you experience unexpected contractions.
  • Do not use when driving, operating machinery, or similar actions needing fine control. Loose pads, damaged leads, or sudden changes in contact may cause brief involuntary muscle movements.
  • Do not use to mask or relieve undiagnosed pain. This may delay diagnosis of progressive condition.
  • Do not use if the patient has cognitive disabilities, i.e.; Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.
  • Do not use if the patient has Implanted Devices.
  • Do not apply through cancerous (malignant) tissue.
  • Do not apply near or touching protruding metal such as surgical surface staples or external pins because they are excellent conductors of electricity.
  • Do not use on any patient who reacts very negatively to the experience or to the sensation of stimulation.
  • Do not use on the heads of children under 12

What do the impulses that stimulate the muscles feel like?

Since your muscles are contracting and relaxing in a similar fashion to regular exercise, the sensation feels very similar to a good workout. Some have described it as a mild tingling sensation. Remember that since you control the strength of the impulses, you also control the amount of stimulation and can adjust for your own comfort level.

What is the Advantage of EMS?

Use of EMS may lead to faster progress in the patient's treatment program. The method is simple and appropriate for treatment in the clinical setting as well as for self-treatment at home.

Successful athletes all over the world have discovered the advantages of EMS, such as an increase of the local circulation and the size of the muscle fibres. EMS also helps to raise the intake of oxygen as well as improve the metabolic exchange and the consumption of energy of the user.

Are there any special precautions which is needed to be consider before using EMS?

Muscular Atrophy may have many causes - therefore muscle problems must be diagnosed by a medical practitioner before EMS treatment begins. If you are using EMS to strengthen healthy muscle, take care not to use at too high an intensity and duration until your muscles become accustomed to the work level.

Excessive use of high intensity or long periods of usage can cause muscle injury. Always increase intensity gradually. If stimulation causes pain reduce intensity or stop treatment.

General Precautions:

  • Do not immerse EMS units in water
  • Do not place EMS unit close to excessive heat
  • Do not attempt to open EMS unit
  • Only use the batteries specified on the user manual for each unit. The use of any other type of battery could damage the units
  • Remove batteries if the unit is not to be used for a long period of time

Complications:

Complications are rare, but precautions should always be taken.

Please note the following possible complications:

  • Allergic reactions to the self-adhesive pads can occur, even though they are hypo-allergenic. If the pads cause irritation, turn off the unit, and remove immediately
  • Do not apply to broken or irritated skin
  • Do not apply pads to skin that does not have normal sensation. If the skin is numb, stimulation will not be felt and high intensities could cause damage unknowingly

After the treatment, either tingling sensations may continue or your skin may feel numb, this is normal.

What is the duration of the treatment?

Depending upon the muscle group and the patient's status, treatment by EMS can vary between 15–60 minutes of stimulation twice a week, to treatment sessions several times per day.

What should be expected during the treatment?

The object of EMS treatment is to produce powerful tetanic muscle contractions. The strength of the current should be increased above the sensory threshold, to the tolerance level. The patient often experiences the electrical contraction as more powerful than a voluntary contraction, because of the sensory effect of the current.

The electrical signals have a pain-relieving effect. Patients usually find the sensation uncomfortable to start with, often not reaching the therapeutic intensities required at the start of treatment. The current intensity can be steadily increased during the course of the treatment, as the patient becomes more accustomed to the current. The powerful muscle contractions caused by electrical stimulation may give rise to training aches to begin with, which usually disappear within a week.

Where the electrodes should be placed for EMS?

Electrode placement for EMS (Electrical Muscle Stimulation) is very important for obtaining the best results. Muscle activation works best when the motor nerve is located and stimulated. Usually the Bipolar Technique is used, in which two electrodes are placed over the bulk of the muscle - with one electrode (usually the black pin) placed over the muscle’s motor point (also used in Asymmetrical Biphasic Pulse Stimulation).

The motor point is the area on the skin that is located closest to the muscle’s motor nerves entry point. Here, it is easiest to trigger a contraction by electrical stimulation.

Localising the motor point provides the cleanest and most comfortable contractions. These points can be located by using a diagram or muscle map such as the one below (see bottom of the page).

Move the electrode across the skin and locate the point over the muscle that gives the cleanest contraction. Large muscle groups may require stimulation with two channels i.e. using four electrodes simultaneously.

Where the electrodes should not be placed?

Pads should NOT be placed:

  • On the carotid sinuses located on the front of the neck, or over the eyes.
  • Across both temples at the same time.
  • On broken skin or on areas where normal sensation is absent.
  • On the abdomen during pregnancy

What is the shelf life of Electrode Pads?

The pads which are supplied with VihaCare E.M.S. units are self-adhesive and can be used several times. Skin must be allowed to breathe - therefore the pads should be removed periodically. When not in use, the pads should be placed on the pad holder or returned to the clear plastic shield.

The condition of the pads does affect the conductivity and performance of the unit. When the pads initially lose their adhesive quality, it is possible to reactivate their adhesiveness by applying a fine spray of water. Once the pads have finally lost their adhesive quality, replacement electrodes should be purchased.


What is IFT?

Interferential Therapy (IFT) is a pain management therapy suited for symptomatic relief, post traumatic & post-surgical pain relief. Interferential Therapy’s major role is to accelerate the inflammatory or healing rate.

How does IFT work?

Interferential Therapy delivers an electrical stimulation into the affected tissue and utilizes two of the medium frequency currents, passed through the tissues simultaneously, where they are set up so that their paths cross and they literally interfere with each other. This interaction gives rise to an interference current (or beat frequency) which has the characteristics of low frequency stimulation – in effect the interference mimics a low frequency stimulation.

What are its Clinical Applications?

The are 4 main clinical applications for which IFT appears to be used:

  • Pain relief
  • Muscle stimulation
  • Increased local blood flow
  • Reduction of oedema

As IFT acts primarily on the excitable (nerve) tissues, the strongest effects are likely to be those which are a direct result of such stimulation (i.e. pain relief and muscle stimulation). The other effects are more likely to be secondary consequences of these.

When can it be used?

It can be used for several conditions such as:

  • Sports Injuries
  • Arthritic Condition
  • Bruising & Swelling
  • Back Pain
  • Osteo-arthritis
  • Interstitial Cystitis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Muscular Pain
  • Neuralgia
  • Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy
  • Shingles
  • non-invasive treatment in chronic constipation

What are its Contraindications?

IFT has been used in physical therapy treatment for many years and has been proven to be very safe. However, patients with cardiac pacemakers, sensory deficits, deep vein thrombosis or pregnant women cannot have interferential therapy. Also, it should not be applied near the low back and one should also avoid the use of this modality in a body part where there is any possible risk of metastasis.

What is the Effect of Interference Frequencies?

Physiotherapists believe that the low frequency interference currents have the following effects:

  • 2Hz - Around this frequency the metencephalins are stimulated - resulting in short term pain relief.
  • 10Hz -This frequency has a beneficial effect on the immune system and tends to make patients wakeful yet relaxed.
  • 130Hz - This frequency stimulates the production of endorphins and results in longer term pain relief and some local anaesthesia.
  • 1-100Hz - This frequency sweep will increase the inflammatory rate.
  • 45 – 90Hz - This frequency sweep will depress the sympathetic nervous system so allowing increased activity of the parasympathetic system, and increase the blood supply.

What is the advantage of using IFT?

  • It can help stimulate a weak muscle by causing it to contract repetitively which will help the muscle regain its function, strength and endurance. This is particularly effective for muscles that have wasted after being immobilized in a cast or following neurologically caused muscle weakness such as with a stroke.
  • It is very effective for pain relief. Interferential stimulation of the nerves causes the central nervous system to facilitate the release of endorphins (pain relieving chemicals) into the body.
  • It stimulates vasodilation in the blood vessels which results in the removal of inflammatory toxins and thus eases swelling.
  • Restores lost movement and improves restricted movements and coordination.

What is the difference between TENS and IFT?

Both the TENS units and IFT have their uses, but they are very different in their reasons for being used.

IFT is a deeper form of the common treatment than TENS. The frequency is higher at 4000Hz as compared to the same signal released by a TENS unit at low frequencies of 5-160 Hz per second.

The IFT’s high frequency waveform reaches the skin deeply with a higher level of stimulation and less discomfort to the patient. An additional benefit of using IFT as compared to TENS is that it accelerates the inflammatory or healing rate along with pain relief.


What is MIC?

MIC stands for MicroCurrent Stimulation and is a type of therapy where very low current is sent into the cells of the body. Microcurrent therapy uses extremely low-level electrical currents (microcurrents) to treat nerve and muscle pain, inflammation and other health challenges. Each tissue type in our body has its own signature electrical frequency, which may be disrupted by injury or disease. Microcurrent therapy simply restores normal frequencies within the cells, resulting in remarkable improvements in pain, inflammation and function.

How does MIC work?

Human cells generate current in micro amperes which cannot be sensed for physiological functioning of cells. When micro-current is delivered to the affected tissue, the micro current stimulates cell functionality and facilitates ATP(energy) production by a series of trigger mechanism to increase tissue healing rate at cellular level. The exact effects of micro current stimulation are noticeable within minutes if ‘correct’ frequency is applied.

What are its Advantages?

At the cellular level, microcurrent therapy stimulates a dramatic increase in ATP, the energy that fuels all biochemical functions in the body. It bumps up protein synthesis, which is necessary for tissue repair. The ensuing enhancement in blood flow and decrease in inflammation translates into reductions in pain and muscle spasms, as well as increased range of motion. In patient surveys over 90% of patients reported significant improvement. In many situations the changes can be long lasting and even permanent in some cases. The results of MIC can be seen after only a minute or so of treatment in most people.

When can it be used?

It can be used for several conditions such as:

  • Sports Injuries
  • Arthritic Condition
  • Bruising & Swelling
  • Back Pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Interstitial Cystitis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Muscular Pain
  • Neuralgia
  • Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy
  • Shingles

When should it not be used?

  • Implanted Devices
  • Pregnancy
  • Experienced Electrocution
  • Metallic Pins/Implants
  • Epilepsy or Seizures

What to expect during the treatment?

MIC is essentially a painless and non-surgical Pain relief therapy. MIC is a very faint current that is so small, it is measured in millionths of an amp (micro amps). Some will recognize warmth of the tissue while being treated. This warmth is the body responding to the effect of the microcurrent stimulation. While in most cases, treatment is virtually sub- sensory, with just a slight electrical tingling sensation.


What is Incontinence?

Incontinence is a widespread condition that ranges in severity from ‘just a small or occasional leak’ to the complete loss of bladder or bowel control. It can occur at any age but it is more likely to develop as you get older. Some people wrongly think that incontinence is a normal part of ageing or that it cannot be treated. This is unfortunate, as many cases can be successfully treated or significantly improved.

Incontinence is commonly associated with:

  • Accidentally leaking urine when you exercise, laugh, cough or sneeze
  • Needing to get to the toilet in a hurry or not making it there in time
  • Constantly needing to go to the toilet
  • Finding it difficult to empty your bladder or bowel
  • Accidentally losing control of your bladder or bowel
  • Accidentally passing wind
  • A prolapse
  • In women, this may be felt as a bulge in the vagina or a feeling of heaviness, discomfort, pulling, dragging or dropping
  • In men, this may be felt as a bulge in the rectum or a feeling of needing to use their bowels but not actually needing to go
  • Pain in your pelvic area, or
  • Painful sex

What is Urinary Incontinence?

Urinary incontinence is often a result of a weak or stretched pelvic floor muscle, which usually assists in supporting the abdominal and pelvic organs, helps to control bladder, bowel, provides support for the baby during pregnancy and assists in the birthing process, works with the abdominal and back muscles to stabilise and support the spine. In men, it is important for erectile function and ejaculation.

Urinary incontinence can often be improved and can be cured in many cases. Urinary incontinence is treated differently according to the type and cause. Pelvic floor exercises are seen as the most effective way to prevent issues with incontinence. Yet, 1 in 3 women who are trying to perform pelvic floor exercises, do not know how or are unable to voluntarily exercise their pelvic floor muscle themselves and require assistance.

What are the risks associated with Urinary Incontinence?

  • Pregnancy (both pre- and post-natal women)
  • Menopause
  • Obesity
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Constipation
  • Specific types of surgery such as prostatectomy (removal of all or part of the prostate) and hysterectomy (removal of all or part of the uterus and/or ovaries)
  • Reduced mobility preventing you from getting to or using the toilet
  • Neurological and musculoskeletal conditions such as multiple sclerosis and arthritis
  • Health conditions such as diabetes, stroke, heart conditions, respiratory conditions, and prostate problems, and
  • Some medications

What are the types of Incontinence?

STRESS INCONTINENCE - occurs during activities that increase abdominal pressure such as coughing, sneezing, laughing, lifting heavy objects or during physical activity. It is the most common form of urinary incontinence and affects about 85-90% women suffering from incontinence.

URGE INCONTINENCE - occurs when the need to urinate comes on so quickly that you might fail to make it to the bathroom in time. Also known as an Overactive Bladder. It can affect anyone at any age, but it appears to be more prevalent in the elderly

MIXED - a combination of both Stress and Urge Incontinence

What are the benefits of using Vihacare Pelvic floor exerciser?

  • Safe and drug-free with no side effects
  • Easy-to-use at home
  • Non-surgical
  • Clinically proven programmes
  • Reduces the usage of containment pads
  • Improves sexual stimulation for women through strengthened pelvic floor muscle
  • Can help to reduce leakage
  • Discreet
  • Helps to avoid rectal prolapse
  • Helps to ease chronic pelvic pain
  • Helps men’s prostate to function

How can Pelvic Floor Exercisers help Urinary Incontinence?

Pelvic Floor Exercisers are portable EMS (Electrical Muscle Stimulation) units which help to build the pelvic muscle strength whilst educating women how to control their pelvic floor. Pelvic Floor Exercisers work by sending gentle stimulation (EMS) to your pelvic floor muscle through a vaginal or anal probe, or via self adhesive electrode pads using clinically recognised programmes. The units exercise and tone the pelvic floor muscle helping you to gain control of your bladder naturally. For best results, it is recommended to use your Pelvic Floor Exerciser in conjunction with Kegel Exercises for best results.

The benefits of pelvic floor exercises for women, particularly after childbirth, are well documented. However, these simple exercises are also very valuable for men following prostatectomy or other prostate surgery where removing the prostate has damaged the area between the bladder and urethra resulting in some form of urinary incontinence whether it is Stress, Mixed or Urge.

A study following men through the first year after prostatectomy found pelvic floor exercises are effective in terms of reducing incontinence.

How can Pelvic Floor Exercisers help Faecal Incontinence?

Faecal incontinence can be the result of weakened or poorly functioning anal sphincter muscles or damage to the nerves controlling them.

Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) can be used to re-educate the anal sphincter to contract. The treatments aim to progress towards graduated active exercises, in order to improve pelvic floor muscles strength and endurance and to regain function.

Why should the Pelvic floor muscles be toned?

Pelvic floor exercises can strengthen and tone the muscle whilst also increasing the blood flow to this region.

Strong or toned pelvic floor muscles can support the extra weight of pregnancy, help in the second stage of labour and, by increasing circulation, assist in healing the perineum between the anus and vagina after birth.

When it is done regularly and correctly, these pelvic floor exercises can help to prevent stress incontinence, bladder weakness and prolapse in later life.

Another benefit of carrying out your pelvic floor exercises is that toned pelvic floor muscles can provide women within a greater level of satisfaction during sex, enabling them to experience orgasm.

Exercising and maintaining the strength of your pelvic floor is also important in reducing the symptoms of incontinence. If you are struggling to complete pelvic floor exercises on your own, you can try using a pelvic floor muscle stimulator.

Pelvic Floor Stimulators send a gentle electrical signal through a vaginal or anal probe which stimulates the pelvic floor muscle, therefore exercising it for you. Results can often be seen and felt in as little as 3 weeks.

How can a Pelvic floor exerciser help?

Research has shown that 30% of women who experience incontinence are unable to voluntarily contract the pelvic floor muscle and require additional assistance to aid their pelvic floor training. In such cases pelvic floor exerciser can help. It provides gentle electrical stimulation to the weakened pelvic floor muscle using clinically recognized programs. It exercises the muscle for you, using a discrete and comfortable tampon shaped probe, developing the pelvic floor muscle strength and subsequent control.

If used for 20 minutes a day over a period of a few weeks, it can increase muscle strength and subsequent control.

What position is best when using Pelvic Floor Exercisers?

A person can use it in any position, but most people would find it more comfortable reclining on the sofa or lying in bed with the knees slightly drawn up. You can also lie on your side with a pillow between your knees if you find it more comfortable.

It is important to find a comfortable position before beginning your 20 minute sessions.

Please Note: Always consult your medical practitioner before using the products

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