Types of Treatment
New Cutting Edge Treatments
BreakThrough now offers BFRT, Dry Needling, and LSVT.
Blood Flow Restriction Training (BRFT)
BFRT is utilized by sports medicine experts, top athletes, and the U.S. military as an effective tool in the rehabilitation and strengthening of patients, producing dramatically positive outcomes.
What Is BFRT?
BFRT is an exercise modality that restricts venous outflow (never arterial occlusion) in combination with light weight or bodyweight training to achieve similar training results to high intensity training.
How Does BFRT Work?
To enhance both muscle mass and strength, high-intensity resistance exercises with loads approximately 70-85 % of 1-Repetition Maximum (1-RM) are recommended. However, heavy-load-resistance exercise may not be possible with injuries that do not allow heavy strength training. BFRT safely utilizes a tourniquet style pressure that safely restricts venous blood flow. Restricted blood flow combined with light resistance exercise facilitates muscle protein synthesis and metabolic accumulation, resulting in similar gains as heavy strength training.
Which Patients Are Indicated For BFRT?
Athletes and non-athletes alike. Whether the patient is recovering from a sports injury or suffering from arthritic pain, BFRT can help build strength and get back to the activities they love. BFRT has also been shown to be safe and effective in elderly populations in reducing sarcopenia and enhancing cardiovascular health.
- What Does BFRT Accomplish? Increase muscle size, strength,
- Increase VO2 max
- Decrease scar tissue and pain
- Increase collagen synthesis for tendons, cartilage, and bone
- Reduce post-surgical atrophy
- Increase anti-clotting factors
Trigger Point Dry Needling (TDN) is a physical therapy treatment technique that utilizes filament needles to make changes in myofascial trigger points. Myofascial trigger points are “knots” in muscles that can contribute to pain and decreased muscle function. TDN is an effective tool in the hand of a physio managing soft tissue injuries, disorders and pain.
What Can Trigger Point Dry Needling at BreakThrough Physical Therapy Do For You?
- Resolve seemingly hopeless issues, particularly for those who are dealing with chronic or persistent pain
- Allow you to perform daily tasks, attend work, and participate in activities you love, without pain
- See initial responses immediately
- Return to your optimal level of function very quickly
Our very own Dr. Villalon has been featured on ABC 11 WTVD in Raleigh for his work as a Dry Needling practitioner. To watch the video and read the entire interview, click here.
All BreakThrough Physical Therapy locations offer TDN treatment by Certified physios.
Dry Needling FAQs
Dry Needling is a treatment technique that utilizes thin, solid filament needles to deactivate and desensitize trigger points in muscles. Myofascial trigger points are knots in muscles that can contribute to pain, decreased flexibility and decreased muscle function. Dry needling is an effective and efficient method of releasing trigger points, especially when other manual soft tissue techniques are unable to directly release or release as many trigger points. Dry needling is also known as Intramuscular Manual Therapy (IMT).
The only similarity to acupuncture is the use of an acupuncture needle. Traditional Acupuncture aims to promote health and restore “energetic balance” by stimulating certain acupuncture points found along certain meridians throughout the body. It is one aspect off a Traditional Chinese Medicine approach which includes diagnosis and clinical reasoning using various Chinese medicine assessment methods. Western or Medical Acupuncture also aims to stimulate acupuncture points along meridians, but applies it to western medical reasoning utilizing anatomy and neurophysiology as its basis and not traditional Chinese medicine. Dry needling is based on anatomy and neurophysiology and its aim is to needle altered or dysfunctional tissues in order to improve or restore function, in most cases specifically myofascial trigger points.
The exact mechanisms of dry needling are not known. Dr. Janet Travell first described trigger point injections in the early 1940s. Injections are performed by injecting trigger points primarily with analgesics. Over the years it has been shown that it is not the substance that is being injected that is providing the long-term therapeutic benefit, but rather the mechanical stimulus of the needle itself. When a needle tip hits a trigger point, a characteristic ‘local twitch’ in the muscle is noted by the clinician and the client. This local twitch is involuntary. It has been shown that the elicitation of local twitch responses is the most important aspect in obtaining a successful therapeutic outcome for trigger point deactivation. There are a number of hypotheses as to the reasons why dry needling works. Dry needling and the subsequent local twitch responses may mechanically disrupt the contracted nature of the trigger point. Dry needling stimulates certain neurological sensors in the body which modulate pain signals. Dry needling and the subsequent local twitch responses can cause positive local biochemical changes and result in an increase of blood flow.
Muscle dysfunction can be the primary or secondary contributing factor to many neuromusculoskeletal conditions. Such conditions would include repetitive stress injuries, muscle tendonitis, neck pain, headaches, rotator cuff impingement, frozen shoulder, carpal tunnel syndrome, sacroiliac joint dysfunction, sciatica, muscle strains, iliotibial band syndrome, patellofemoral dysfunction, and plantar fasciitis. If active trigger points are found to be causing pain, muscle tightness and/or muscle weakness then they would benefit from being treated by dry needling.
Most people do not feel the insertion of the needle. The local twitch response elicits a very brief cramping and/or deep aching sensation. dry needling may reproduce symptoms directly in the muscle being treated or may refer to other areas of the body. This is a form of referred pain, which is one of the hallmarks of trigger points. Elicitation of local twitch responses and recognizable referred pain is a good and desirable reaction because it confirms a possible source of dysfunction.
Yes, we only use the highest quality sterile disposable needles.
In some cases, decreased pain and improved mobility is immediate. Typically, it may take a few treatment sessions for a lasting positive effect. Again we are trying to cause mechanical, biochemical and neurological changes without any pharmacological means. Therefore, we are looking for a cumulative response to deactivate trigger points, disrupt pain and to restore optimal muscle function.
It is typical to experience soreness in the area treated for 1-2 days. The soreness is quite tolerable for most and is easily alleviated with cold/heat and stretching.
In the United States, dry needling is a relatively new method for treating myofascial trigger points and not everyone is already aware of this effective treatment modality. Needling therapies are very common practice for physiotherapists in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, and South Africa and is slowly making its way through the United States. More and more physical therapists are incorporating dry needling into their practice. Incorporating the treatment technique with other manual and rehabilitative methods is showing to be very effective in treating various neuromusculoskeletal conditions. Feel free to inform your doctor about this treatment option. It is upon all of us to educate others about new and innovative ways to treat pain.
Speak with one of our therapists or schedule an appointment to determine if dry needling would be an appropriate for your injury or condition.
BreakThrough Physios are now LSVT BIG® certified clinicians. LSVT BIG® trains people with Parkinson’s disease to use their body more normally. LSVT BIG® is an intensive, amplitude-focused treatment that effectively trains your neuromuscular system.
Who Benefits from LSVT Treatment?
The exercises can be modified depending on the patient’s functional ability. Developed and scientifically researched over the past 25 years with funding from the National Institutes of Health, LSVT BIG® has demonstrated improvements in motor function in people with Parkinson’s disease including, but not limited to:
- Faster walking with bigger steps
- Improved balance
- Increased trunk rotation
- Improvements in daily living activities such as bed mobility and dressing
- Improved fine motor control
LSVT BIG Program Features
The LSVT treatment protocol consists of:
- 16 occupational or physical therapy sessions:
- 4 consecutive days per week for 4 weeks
- Individual one-hour sessions
- Daily homework practice/carryover exercises
- Program available as an outpatient or via home health (physician order required)
Now Available at Morehead City and Greensboro
Ready to reclaim your life? BreakThrough is here to help.
Here’s what some of our patients had to say
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We rate BreakThrough Physical Therapy a 10; we are extremely happy! After having received excellent PT in the past, we had no doubt this was the only place we would trust with our son’s recovery. The warm, welcoming environment makes it a comfortable place to receive therapy. This puts him at ease allowing for the…
After just 4 visits…I feel like a brand new person. Before, I could barely walk for 15 minutes without my back screaming in pain. Now I’m zooming through therapy and going on walks at home.
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Amazing service. They have gone out of their way to call and follow up with me while doing my at-home exercises. Highly recommend.
My husband was skeptical of my choice to use physical therapy to treat my back pain instead of medications. After seeing my results from working with the BreakThrough Physical Therapy team, my husband is a believer now too.
I couldn’t have wished for a better place to go for my knee replacement therapy! They know what they are doing to get you back in the swing of things so you can go on with your life!