Continuous low-intensity ultrasound attenuates inflammatory markers and repairs chondral fissures..
Therapeutic ultrasound has fallen so far out of favour in the world of sports medicine that even the mere mention of it with any hint of benefit is usually accompanied by derision and scorn!
Research physiotherapist Dr. David Butler has famously called it ultrabullshit!
So, I was intrigued to read a paper that landed on my desk this morning entitled
Continuous low-intensity ultrasound attenuates IL-6 and TNFα-induced catabolic effects and repairs chondral fissures in bovine osteochondral explants , Sahu et al, BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2019, 20:193
This is interesting because this study not only demonstrated a reduction in key inflammatory mediators IL-6 and TNFα, but it also showed actual repair to damaged articular cartilage!
The full paper may be read here, however, the conclusion begs some attention, namely
"cLIUS (continuous low intensity ultrasound) repaired chondral fissures, and elicited pro-anabolic and anti-catabolic effects, thus demonstrating the potential of cLIUS in improving cartilage repair outcomes"
The only obvious issue is that this is an animal study, however this seems promising. Ultrasound is cheap and non invasive.
Watch this space.
Director of Bartold Clinical