What is the difference between a 1MHz & 3MHz Ultrasound Machine?

By Med-Fit UK Content Team  .  Last Updated Saturday, 10th September 2022

What is a Therapeutic Ultrasound Machine?

When you see or hear the word ‘Ultrasound’, most customers and the general public think the device or application used during pregnancy, a tool that is used to generate imagery of the womb. Other regular forms of Ultrasound devices are used to capture images of soft tissues and images of organs; however Therapeutic Ultrasound is different.

Therapeutic Ultrasound Machines are known and often used for treating chronic pain but also promoting tissue healing. It is recommended for an number of conditions, for example:

  • Ligament Injury or Damage
  • Joint Tightness
  • Tendonitis
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Joint Pain
  • Carpel Tunnel Syndrome
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Phantom Limb Pain
  • Pain caused by scar tissue

And much more..

There are two types of Ultrasound therapy - Mechanical and Thermal therapy treatment. Both treatments use sound waves generated from the head of the Ultrasound machine (known as the transducer) to penetrate deep into the soft tissue.

The real difference between both types of treatment is the rate at which the sound waves penetrate the tissue.

Mechanical Ultrasound Therapy – This treatment uses a type of pulse style sound wave to penetrate the soft tissue. This has a minor warming effect on the tissue; however, it causes expansion and contraction in the tiny gas bubbles amongst the soft tissue. This has been known to decrease swelling, pain and inflammatory responses.

Thermal Ultrasound Therapy – This type of treatment is a more continuous transmission of sound waves from the Ultrasound machine. The sound waves generated cause microscopic vibrations in the deep tissue, increasing friction and heat. This type of warming effect helps encourage healing in the soft tissue by increasing the metabolism at cellular level.

How do I use the Ultrasound Machine?

When using the Therapeutic Ultrasound Machine, you will need to add a bit of Ultrasound Gel to the surface of your skin (the area you aim to treat) and apply a bit of gel to the transducer head – this will help the sound waves penetrate your skin far more effectively.

During treatment, you will need to make sure you continually moving the transducer head over and around the selected area for at least 5 to 10 minutes.

What is the difference between 1 & 3 MHz Ultrasound Machines?

The difference between both MHZ’s Ultrasound Machines is to do with the depth the sound waves penetrate, which is important when deciding which machine would work best for you.

  • 1Mhz Ultrasound Machine would be appropriate for treating tissue that is between 2.3 and 5cm in depth – this would be great for pain relief for several conditions.
  • 3Mhz Ultrasound Machine would be appropriate for treating tissue at depths between 0.8 cm and 1.6 cm – this is usually fantastic for scar tissue, cellulite reduction and skin conditions.

Is Ultrasound Therapy Safe for you?

Ultrasound Therapy Machines are deemed safe by a number of different health administrations; however they advise that the transducer head must keep moving at all times during use.
If the transducer head remains in one place for too long, there is a potential to burn the soft tissue underneath, which you may or may not feel.