Ultrasound Heating Is Curvilinear in Nature and Varies between Transducers from the Same Manufacturer

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Timothy J. Demchak
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Stephen J. Straub
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Lennart D. Johns
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Ultrasound heating rates are known to differ between various manufacturers; it is unknown whether this difference exists within a manufacturer.


Determine if intramuscular heating differences exist between transducers from the same manufacturer.

Study Design:

3 × 10 repeated measures. Independent variables were Transducer (A, B, and C) and Time (10-min time points during the treatment).


Controlled laboratory.


Twelve volunteers (M = 4, F = 8; age: 23 ± 4 years; calf-girth: 37.94 ± 4.16 cm; calf-skinfold: 27 ± 17 mm).


Three 10-min 1MHz continuous ultrasound treatments performed at an intensity of 1.2 W/cm2, over an area 2x transducer.

Main Outcome Measures:

Calf temperature increase.


Heating curve generated for each transducer were significantly different (P = .034) but the overall temperature increases following 10 minutes of treatment were within 0.1°C (F = 1.023 P = .573).


Heating curves differ between transducers from the same manufacturer but peak heating at 10 minutes was similar.

Timothy J. Demchak is Assistant Professor in the Athletic Training Department at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, IN. E-mail: athdemch@isugw.indstate.edu. Stephen J. Straub is Associate Professor and Lennart D. Johns is Professor, both in the Department of Physical Therapy at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, CT.

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