Effective methods of physiotherapeutic treatment of osteochondrosis

Physiotherapy procedures in the treatment of osteochondrosis are of no small importance, since they have a high therapeutic efficiency.

Such methods of treatment allow the delivery of medications directly to the inflammatory focus. Moreover, physiotherapy sessions do not have any pathological effect on neighboring areas, since they act selectively.

The essence of physiotherapy is the effect on the inflamed areas of various kinds of physical phenomena such as an electric or magnetic field, cold or heat, radiation, etc.

The purpose of physiotherapy methods for osteochondrosis

The main direction of physiotherapy is the elimination of pain and the arrest of destructive processes in the cartilage and discs located between the vertebrae.

Therefore, carrying out physiotherapy sessions in the complex elimination of cervical, thoracic and lumbar osteochondrosis pursues certain goals:

  1. Relief of pain syndrome;
  2. Normalization of material exchanges;
  3. Stimulating the immune defense;
  4. Improvement of microcirculation at the sites of lesions;
  5. Improving the general condition of tissues and organs;
  6. Removal of inflammation and puffiness;
  7. Increased motor capabilities;
  8. Decrease in the severity of disorders caused by disorders of musculoskeletal functions;
  9. Activation of neurohumoral activity.

Indications and contraindications

Physiotherapy techniques are indicated for patients with osteochondrosis to stimulate the body’s recovery abilities and to eliminate persistent pain syndrome.

Such sessions are necessary when you need to achieve:

  • Restoration of metabolic processes in the diseased area;
  • Eliminate nerve-root pinching;
  • Get rid of inflammation;
  • Bring the blood supply to the affected area back to normal;
  • Relieve pain symptoms and muscle spasms.

Physiotherapy is very important in the general treatment of osteochondrosis, although it is complementary to the main therapy.

But even the undeniable effectiveness and significance of such sessions does not deprive them of a number of contraindications that should be observed:

  1. The presence of damage to the skin layer in the area where physiotherapeutic effects are expected;
  2. Severe or insufficiently stable condition of the patient;
  3. The presence of diseases of oncological etiology;
  4. Mental disorders in the acute phase;
  5. Acute stage of osteochondrosis;
  6. Diseases of the kidneys or liver, vascular system, respiration, or heart;
  7. Pregnancy.


To alleviate the condition and eliminate osteochondrosis symptoms, several physiotherapeutic techniques are very successfully used.

Darsonval treatment

One of the most popular procedures, due to its effectiveness and ease of implementation, is considered darsonvalization, based on the effect of a pulsed current. Darsonval treatment is indicated at any stage of osteochondrosis, since it has practically no contraindications.

The darsonvalization technique gives a lot of useful effects:

  • Impact with a pulsed current prevents the proliferation of intervertebral discs, leading to the formation of a hernia;
  • High-frequency exposure stimulates regenerative processes in cartilaginous tissues;
  • Darsonvalization sessions have a vasodilating effect, due to which the excruciating headaches that usually bother the patient with cervical osteochondrosis pass away.

In general, the effect of Darsonval is aimed at eliminating inflammatory foci and eliminating pain symptoms.


Quite often, anti-osteochondrosis treatment includes a magnetotherapy method, which involves exposure to the affected area with magnetic fields.

The main advantages of this physiotherapy method are:

  1. The ability of magnetic fields to stimulate blood circulation;
  2. Anesthetic effect of magnetotherapy;
  3. Magnetic fields stop the development of inflammation, gradually preventing the destruction of cartilage tissue.

Treatment with magnetic fields is carried out using a special device customized for a specific patient; there are also devices for home magnetotherapy.

It is worth considering that such therapy is contraindicated in patients with implanted pacemakers, tuberculosis or oncology.


Another method with high rates of therapeutic efficacy is electrophoresis, which consists in the administration of drugs using electrical exposure. This technique has many advantages:

  • Absence of painful sensation and damage to the skin during the introduction of medications;
  • Lack of side factors;
  • The medication is delivered to the affected area;
  • In addition to the localized effect of the drug, the anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect of the current is achieved;
  • The duration of the therapeutic effect of the drugs used increases.

For the procedure, gauze wipes are moistened in a medicinal solution and applied to the diseased area, then electrodes are fixed on them. The session time is determined by the physiotherapist.

Laser therapy

Another effective physiotherapy procedure often prescribed for osteochondrosis is laser therapy, which involves exposure to a low-frequency laser on the affected area.

As a result, the regeneration processes are stimulated and the independent restoration of cartilaginous tissues is started.

After the procedure, the following is observed:

  1. Enhancing and strengthening immunity;
  2. Restoration of full blood circulation;
  3. In the affected areas, oxygen supply is improved;
  4. Antiviral and antiallergic action on body tissues;
  5. After the first session, the pain syndrome subsides, and positive dynamics appears.

Laser treatment will be most effective if it is used as part of a complex treatment process, and not as an independent and only method of therapy.


Ultrasound treatment is the effect on the affected lesions with sound waves that are not perceived by our hearing. Such treatment is based on:

  • Sound effect;
  • The thermal effect, which occurs during the transformation of sound energy into heat;
  • Biochemical effects.

Such principles ensure the normalization of blood circulation, reduce the manifestations of pain, relieve spasms, inhibit inflammatory processes, dilate blood vessels, increasing the flow of lymph and blood throughout the body, dissolving puffiness.

Vibration effect

Vibration techniques are based on high frequency sound exposure (above 20,000 Hz). With this treatment, you can successfully get rid of persistent pain syndrome. The effectiveness of the sessions increases when they are combined with medications.

Contraindications to vibration exposure should be observed, which prohibit sessions for patients with vibration sickness, oncology, mental disorders and skin injuries in the area of ​​exposure.

Detensor therapy

The method of physiotherapy with the help of detensor therapy consists in stretching the affected spine due to the influence of the patient’s own weight. This technique has long been used for therapeutic purposes, and to this day it is the cause of controversial disputes. The result of the detenzor therapy sessions is:

  • Relief of pain for a long time;
  • Relieving tension from the affected discs located between the vertebrae.

Many experts do not consider the detensor technique as a treatment, since only temporary pain relief is achieved with its help.

Exercise therapy

Physiotherapy is an integral part of the anti-osteochondrosis therapeutic complex.

Regular and correct performance of adequately selected exercises can be a serious assistant in the treatment of osteochondrosis.

Of course, physiotherapy exercises should be combined with drug treatment, only in this way its effectiveness will reach its maximum potential.

Physical education should not be practiced during periods of exacerbation of the disease, and the complex of exercises performed should be selected by a specialist, taking into account the individual clinical characteristics of the patient.


This technique involves the treatment of osteochondrosis with mineral waters. Balneotherapy sessions are of many types:

  • Therapeutic pools;
  • Shared baths;
  • Shower procedures;
  • Washing, etc.

Most often, with osteochondrosis, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, hydrogen sulfide, radon, sulfide and salt baths, as well as contrast shower procedures, are prescribed.

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