galvanic electrolysis therapy
Triggering biological processes that generate new tissue.
Ultrasound-guided galvanic electrolysis (USGET) is a technique most commonly used on chronically affected tissue. A galvanic current flows through an acupuncture needle producing an inflammatory reaction in the tissue. The inflammatory reaction will trigger a host of biological processes in the body. These will ultimately start the generation of new immature collagen fibres. The fibres become mature by means of eccentric stimulus.
The technique shows good results on tendons in the chronic phase, and may be used for injuries, such as long-standing muscle injury and treatment of myofascial pain syndrome and trigger points.
The application of USGET should be limited to trained professionals and under ultrasound guidance*.
*Abat F, et al. Current trends in tendinopathy: consensus of the ESSKA basic science committee. Part II: treatment options. J Exp Orthop. 2018 Sep 24;5(1):38.Cancel
Application of Ultrasound-guided Galvanic Electrolysis Therapy
Ultrasound-guided Galvanic Electrolysis Therapy’s (USGET) place in the treatment of tendinopathies:
Classically, the term tendinitis was used considering that the fundamental lesion was an inflammation of the tendon. Nowadays, we know that we can find degenerated tissue with fragmentation, an alteration of the collagen and vascular hyperplasia, with inflammatory cells almost absent.1 2This increased understanding of the pathophysiology leads to a change in the therapeutic approach. At present, the therapeutic techniques used in the treatment of tendinopathy have abandoned the goal of eliminating inflammation of the tendon and instead try to impact on the biology of the tendon to stimulate its regeneration.1
Since the concept of tendinopathy as a defective healing process has broadened, therapeutic options have been progressively moving toward restoring natural tendon biology. Within the therapeutic arsenal, eccentric exercises play an important role although they have been proven insufficient when the tissue is significantly degenerated 3. These exercises assist in the recovery of the biomechanical qualities of the tendon if the biology of previously damaged tissue can be restored.4
When eccentric exercises are not bringing the required results, the next step in the treatment of tendinopathies is the combination of shockwave therapy and eccentric exercises. The aim of this therapy is to cause an inflammation, thereby bringing the degenerated tissue from a chronic to an acute phase.
If this combination is not successful and before having to move to an invasive, surgical solution, the minimally invasive ultrasound-guided galvanic electrolysis treatment (USGET), always in combination with eccentric exercise, might bring the required results.
USGET causes a controlled local inflammatory process in the target tissue. This allows for phagocytosis and the subsequent regeneration of the affected tissue.5 6 The results obtained with the combination of USGET and eccentric exercise have reported better outcomes than conventional electro-physiotherapy techniques.7
Myofascial trigger points and Ultrasound-guided Galvanic Electrolysis Therapy:
A myofascial trigger point (MTrP) is a hyperirritable spot in skeletal muscle that is associated with a hypersensitive palpable nodule in a taut band. The spot is tender when pressed and can give rise to characteristic referred pain, motor dysfunction, and autonomic phenomena.8
Several needling treatments are proposed for treatment of myofascial pain syndrome. In fact, two different needling applications can be used to inactivate MTrP: wet needling (injections) or dry needling.9 Dry needling refers to the insertion of a solid filiform needle into a MTrP without the introduction of any substance. In addition, dry needling can be also combined with electrical current giving other modalities such as electrical dry needling or percutaneous electrolysis (USGET).10 Early clinical research shows that percutaneous electrolysis (USGET) could be a promising alternative for the treatment of MTrPs.11
Other applications for Ultrasound-guided Galvanic Electrolysis Therapy
Application of Ultrasound-guided Galvanic Electrolysis Therapy on soft tissue problems:
In their prospective randomised trial, Fernández Rodríguez et al.13 show that USGET may be used successfully in the treatment of plantar fasciitis. The treatment was safe and effective for chronic plantar heal pain in the short term (0 - 3 months), and was even better at the intermediate term (3 – 6 months), achieving better results than placebo in pain relief and improvement in functional disability.
USGET may still be seen as an emerging treatment method and there are pathologies treated that are not yet supported by clear clinical evidence, these are however, showing encouraging results.
- Shoulder bursitis
- Retrocalcaneal bursitis
- Neck and shoulder muscles
- Calf muscles
- Lateral knee ligament
- Lateral foot/ ankle ligaments
- Baker’s cyst
- Haglund’s syndrome
The intuitive touchscreen makes working with the Acure Electrolysis 8000 easy and uncomplicated. The handpiece, with its ergonomic design, is easy to operate and has ingenious features, such as an LED ring display giving feedback during treatment and indicating that it is ready for operation.
The treatment start/stop button and increase/ decrease intensity buttons on the handpiece give you full control during treatment. No need to look at the device or to use foot switches. Once you have chosen the required settings and confirmed them on the device, the needle may be inserted into the Acure smart handpiece and the device is ready for operation.
- High maximum intensity of 8 mA for more effective and time-efficient electrolysis with dedicated channels for Ultrasound-guided Galvanic Electrolysis Therapy and dry needling
- Handpiece with ingenious and safe needle grip mechanism, works as wired remote control to start/stop therapy and adjust desired intensity directly
- Mains and battery power operation with smart battery management system allowing maximum life of the re-chargeable li-ion battery
Body area menu allows treatment selection based on anatomical locations and to create own protocols
- Allows customisation of the device settings, easy operation via direct therapy keys and includes anatomical library and contra-indications list
- Safe operation with visual and auditory feedback on all device conditions and post-treatment graphic representing administered charge
- Mountable handpiece holder for both left and right handed users, with a slightly magnetic mounting grip for secure storage, specifically designed to avoid accidental needle punctures
It is a long term remedy that ensures the tendinopathy does not return
The treatment with ultrasound-guided electrolysis has been positioned internationally as a first-rate tool to treat soft tissue injuries (tendon, ligaments, fascia and muscle).
The Acure Electrolysis 8000 device is specifically designed for healthcare personnel trained to apply a high dose and therefore more effective electrolysis. This 4-8mA dose provides an optimal regenerative biological reaction that, when combined with mechanical stimulation, manages to heal 90% of muscle-tendon injuries.Dr. Ferran Abat (MD.PhD) Sports Orthopaedic – Specialist in tendon and muscle injuries