Intra-Muscular Stimulation (IMS) is an advanced technique, also known as Trigger Point Dry Needling, which can be used to treat chronic pain. It was developed in the late 1970s by Dr. Chan Gunn, a Western-trained physician out of Canada who was also trained in acupuncture. Dr. Gunn combined aspects of western medicine and acupuncture to develop Intra-Muscular Stimulation. He believes that IMS works by using acupuncture needles to relieve neuropathies, altered nerve function secondary to nerve root compression.
Trigger points are small sustained muscle contractions that may result in shortening of the muscle, decreased range of motion, and neuropathy. Usually caused by overuse or injury, trigger points are contractions that are sustained by chemical and neuro-muscular transmitters that won’t allow the muscle to relax.These sustained contractions limit the muscle ability to lengthen fully and decrease the muscles ability to produce force in a shorted position, which causes chronic pain and pain referral patterns (pain that radiates or refers to other parts of the body).
Trigger Point Dry Needling/Intramuscular Stimulation is a safe procedure done in the clinic with acupuncture needles by a skilled and trained professional. There are very few side effects or serious risks with IMS; these will be discussed with you prior to treatment. IMS is a great way to relax and release chronic muscle spasm/ trigger points and relieve chronic pain.Try it!