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IASTM Therapy

When it comes to everyday activities, it’s important to keep soft tissue injuries moving and flexible if possible. Learn how Banner Health physical therapists can help keep you on your feet and continue to keep scar tissue at a minimum with IASTM therapy. 

What Is IASTM Therapy?

Instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization (IASTM) therapy, mainly used in orthopedic physical therapy, is used on soft tissue injuries to muscles, tendons and ligaments. IASTM treatment uses tools and methods, such as the Graston Technique, to alleviate symptoms like Achilles tendinosis, plantar fasciitis and more. The Graston Technique is an IASTM therapy and technique that uses instruments to scrape the skin over the muscles to help minimize scar tissue.

Types of IASTM Tools Used 

Depending on the technique used during IASTM, your therapist will decide on the tool being used during therapy. Many therapists can choose between plastic, stainless steel or jade tools for IASTM therapy, but there are three types of IASTM tools that most therapists have:

  • The handlebar
  • Beveled edge tools
  • Smooth-edged tools

Who Can Benefit from IASTM?

Many patients who have experienced a soft tissue injury can benefit from multiple treatments of IASTM. Some of the benefits of IASTM therapy include faster rehabilitation, a decrease in treatment time and patients can continue with day-to-day activities. 

What Is IASTM Used For?

IASTM is used to break down scar tissue that starts to form on soft tissue areas. If a patient does not receive therapy and the scar tissue continues to form, this can cause restricted mobility in the area. IASTM is aimed to help break down the scar tissue to help improve movement in that area. 

What to Expect From IASTM

Patients who experience IASTM treatment can expect slight discomfort during therapy. Depending on when the patient comes in will depend on how many sessions and how much discomfort they may feel. Your therapist will first warm the injured area to be able to move around the tissue and scar tissue. After the tissue is warm, your therapist will perform IASTM with tools to help apply pressure to the restricted area. This will help improve movement and flexibility in the area. 

What Happens After Therapy?

Your therapist may also have you complete exercises at home to continue strengthening and building up the movement in the injured area. 

Let the IASTM physical therapy experts at Banner Physical Therapy help keep you moving forward in your recovery process. Contact your local Banner physical therapist for more information about IASTM. 

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