We all regularly experience muscle and joint pain due to overuse, arthritis, or after a fall. Thanks to new research, physical therapists in Louisville are incorporating a technique called dry needling into treatment sessions to alleviate these symptoms.
“With injuries and overuse, muscles develop hard knots in them called trigger points that can cause pain,” says Eric McElroy, DPT, a physical therapist at Physical Therapy Plus in the Highlands. In dry needling, therapists introduce very thin needles into these knots, breaking them up. This causes muscles to relax, decreases pain, and improves movement.
McElroy is quick to point out that dry needling is only one component of a well-rounded physical therapy treatment plan. “Dry needling relaxes inflamed muscles and decreases pain so we can then focus treatment on restoring normal movement and function in a patient,” he says.