Call Hamilton Physio


Reinhold Rehabilitation Hamilton

Chan Gunn Intramuscular Stimulation

Intramuscular stimulation (IMS) is a treatment which is effective for headaches, neck pain, whiplash injuries, shoulder pain, tennis elbow, low back pain (with or without sciatic pain). It is effective for hip problems caused by muscle spasm, as well as leg pain such as shin splints and foot pain such as Achilles tendonitis, muscular foot problems such as plantar fasciitis and early pain from halux valgus.

IMS is an effective treatment for chronic pain of neuropathic origin. It is effective for neuropathic and musculoskeletal pain syndromes and is performed only by certified practitioners. At Reinhold Rehabilitation Services IMS is used in conjunction with other treatment techniques, such as manual therapy and exercise.

IMS is based on neurophysiological principles and modern anatomical concepts. Pain occurs when nerves malfunction following minor irritation. The nerves and nerve endings become sensitive and this is referred to as super sensitivity. Muscle spasm, or muscle shortening produces pain by pulling on tendons and distressing the joints which they move. The muscle shortening increases wear and tear of joints and contributes to degenerative changes such as tendonitis and osteoarthritis. Inserting a fine needle into the shortened muscle will relieve the spasm and decrease the irritation over the nerve.

The effects of intramuscular stimulation are cumulative, as needling stimulates the healing process and decreases pain. IMS is highly effective and has few side effects. The technique is excellent for finding and diagnosing muscle shortening in deep muscles, which cannot be reached by other physiotherapy methods or massage.

Intramuscular stimulation should only be performed by certified practitioners.

Intramuscular Stimulation FAQ'S

Where did IMS come from?

Intramuscular stimulation was developed in Canada by Dr. Chan Gunn, a clinical professor at the University of Washington's Multidisciplinary Pain Centre and the University of British Columbia's Medical School.

Other conditions that can be treated using IMS
  • Arthritic Conditions
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Chronic Tendonitis or Bursitis
  • Golfers Elbow
  • Myofascial Pain Syndrome
  • Myofascial Trigger Points
  • Repetitive Strain Injuries
  • Shoulder Injuries
  • Spinal Disc Problems
  • Sports Injuries
How often do I require IMS treatments?

Treatments are usually performed one to two times per week, with decreasing intensity as the pain and muscle shortening is released. In published studies, the average number of treatments on patients with low back pain was 8.2 sessions.