Superficial heat can produce heating effects at a depth limited to 1-2cm. Deeper tissues are generally not heated due to the thermal insulation of subcutaneous fat and the increased cutaneous blood flow which dissipates heat. It has been found to be helpful in diminishing pain and decreasing local muscle spasm. Superficial heat, such as the hydrocolater pack, should be used as an adjunct to facilitate an active exercise program. It is most often used during the acute phases of treatment when the reduction of pain and inflammation are the primary goals. If beneficial, it can be incorporated into the education program and utilized on a home basis prior to the therapy program.
At Island Spine and Sports we offer a wide variety of physical therapy options.
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