Want to see how physical therapists use Dry Needling? Checkout this video of Dr. Kelly Brouwer, DPT of MERZ Physical Therapy at The Marsh.

Hi guys! Today we are going to do a demonstration of dry needling, and Mike has graciously volunteered to be our volunteer today. We're going to be needling his upper trapezius which sits right on top of the shoulder. So, without further ado, we have Mike prepped, we've cleaned his skin, we have our needle ready to go. We also have Mike holding on to the end of our stim unit. We're going to use some Tenstim as an addition to our treatment today so you can see what his muscle’s doing, and also to make sure Mike doesn't walk away quite so sore. So we'll turn that on in a second.

I'm going to get my needle opened here. All right. And the needle sits in a tube, and that's for sterile reasons and for insertion. We'll go ahead and grab on to Mike's upper trap. We're going to pull it up and away from his body so it's nice and safe. We're going to get our needle in place, and I've kind of already palpated or poked on Mike to see where he's tender. We're going to give the needle a little tap, all right. And then we'll go ahead and start to piston that needle. We're going to see if we can get some twitch response from Mike. And if you watch carefully we should, there we go, a nice twitch in that muscle. And now that we have our latent twitch response, we're going to go ahead and throw on some of that TENS. Mike's holding on to that ground unit so that we can run that current through. We're going to touch the end of that needle and start to slowly turn up our TENS. You should start to see that muscle fire. While I'm treating Mike, I might play with how quickly or slowly I'm using that, or how that twitch frequency is being utilized. If I go nice and slow, so Mike has a slow twitch, that's going to focus on getting some blood flow, getting some good nutrients in and getting some of that, what I like to call, "sludge" out of the muscle.

If Mike was having a hard time firing this muscle I might turn that twitch frequency a little faster, and that's to start encouraging neurotransmitter, which is the chemical that goes from the nerve to the muscle, to run across there and get that muscle firing better. But we'll bring that back down so it's nice and comfortable. And we might let this run until Mike’s sensation of cramping or aching kind of goes away, or until I see a change in what I'm feeling. Dry needling, we can have almost an immediate after-effect in terms of what we're feeling. So sometimes when the muscle is feeling really, really stiff, the minute we get the needle out we have a nice healthy supple muscle.

This is Kelly Brouwer saying Move Well so you can Live Well.