Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Ultrasound for slipped disc?

27.09.2006
A woman giving birth receives better pain relief from injections of sterile water compared with acupuncture. The sterile water also helps the woman to relax more. This is shown in a dissertation from the Sahlgrenska Academy in Göteborg, Sweden.

Slipped disc is a common ailment that causes a great deal of back pain and nerve pain in the bone­-sciatica­-that leads to many sick days home from work. Sometimes the disorder rectifies itself, but sometimes a rather complicated operation is needed. But now it seems that a gentler alternative, ultrasound, is on its way. The new method has been developed at Lund University and the University Hospital at Lund in Sweden. The technique is described in a dissertation by the physicist Johan Persson.

The principle is to direct focused ultrasound directly at the disc that has started to bulge outward and press against the nerves. When the disc cartilage warms up, its collagen fibers shrink, so the cartilage no longer bulges so much. This means that it no longer presses against the nerves that cause the pain.

Johan Persson's dissertation work involves the design of an ultrasound transmitter, temperature measurements in the laboratory, and simulation of the temperature distribution in the disc during ultrasound treatment­-some of the key steps in the development of this new technique. In traditional slipped disc operations, the damaged disc is opened up. The operation requires hospital care and a long period of sick leave, and it also involves a risk of complications. Ultrasound treatment, on the other hand, is done with a local anesthetic, takes only six minutes, and requires no hospital stay. If the method lives up to its promise, it will therefore be both more attractive to patients and cheaper for health care.

According to Björn Strömqvist, professor of orthopedics, the ultrasound method is intended for slipped discs that are not too large (so-called covered, non-perforated hernias). It is being tested now in a so-called multi-center study in Sweden, Germany, South Korea, Italy, and Turkey. The study is still in a very early phase, but preliminarily it seems that two thirds of the slipped disc patients treated have been helped by ultrasound.

Under the direction of Björn Strömqvist, the Section for Orthopedics at Lund will also study whether the method can be used for so-called disc degeneration. This is an age-related change in the cartilage discs of the vertebrae that is even more common than slipped discs.

More information from Johan Persson, phone: +46 46-222 07 39; cell phone: +46 733-12 99 11, Johan_K.Persson@med.lu.se, or his thesis director, Professor Björn Strömqvist, phone: +46 46-17 20 63 and bjorn.stromqvist@med.lu.se

A summary of the dissertation is available at http://theses.lub.lu.se/postgrad/. Its title is Effects of High Intensity Focused Ultrasound on the Intervertebral Disc.

Elin Lindström | idw
Further information:
http://www.vr.se
http://theses.lub.lu.se/postgrad/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>