Dry Needling

SSOR offers dry needling for our customers.  If you are a patient is here and dry needling is indicated, then we will offer this as a treatment option to you.  If however you are not a patient and just want dry needling, that is OK too.  The whole team of physical therapists at SSOR are certified in dry needling.

What is dry needling?

Therapeutic Dry Needling (TDN) uses a fine filament needle to treat a trigger point or a dysfunctional area of your muscle.  It is “dry” because there is NOT an injection of any liquid or substance.  The goal is to improve your range of motion and reduce pain and/or muscle spasm.

Dry Needling for Physical Therapy

What’s a trigger point?

A trigger point is exquisite tenderness at a nodule in a palpable band of muscle.  Trigger points produce referred pain, either spontaneously or by compression of it.

Does dry needling hurt?

TDN should not hurt.  You may have a deep, achy sensation and/or a “twitch” response in the muscle that your physical therapist is treating.  You may experience a slight burning sensation, but this should not last.  You may notice that pain may radiate away from the site of the injection, and that is common.  That said, tell your physical therapist what you are feeling and if it is hurting.  Treatment can stop at any time.  You are in control.

What are the risks of dry needling?

Since TDN involves the use of needles, there may be some discomfort and bruising.  Further, TDN may not be appropriate for those with a fear of needles.  If you have a fear of needles, please let us know.  Any time a needle is used, there is a risk of infection.  We attempt to mitigate this risk by using disposable, sterile needles.

Although very rare, some bleeding could occur.  Please let us know if you have a genetic bleeding disorder or are regularly taking any blood-thinning medication (for example, Coumadin or Warfarin) or pain relievers containing ibuprofen, NSAIDS, aspirin or acetaminophen (for example, Tylenol, Advil or Aleve). Also, please let us know if you have any condition that can be transmitted via blood or other bodily fluids.

Very rare complications include potential nerve damage (which could result in numbness, pain or tingling) and accidental puncture of a lung (pneumothorax) if needles are placed in close proximity to the chest wall.  If a lung puncture were to occur, you may experience shortness of breath, a dry cough or an increased breathing rate. A punctured lung may only require a chest x-ray and no further treatment. If a more severe lung puncture were to occur (again, this is quite rare), it could require hospitalization and re-inflation of the lung.  We can’t emphasize enough that these complications are extremely rare.  It is our duty to alert you however of the possibility.

Are there side effects?

Patients have reported a few different things after treatment.  Some say it’s sore, like the muscle has had a workout.  Some people say it feels temporarily tighter, but then loosens up over time.  Other than that, people report improvements almost right away.  Very rarely, bruising, light headedness, drowsiness, or fatigue can occur, but again, this is extremely rare.

How long does a dry needling treatment take?

After you’ve had the opportunity to ask questions, your physical therapist will briefly assess the potential treatment area and will dry needle it as indicated.  Often, treatment is complete within a matter of minutes.

How much does it cost?

For cash-pay customers, the first treatment costs $25 and takes about 20 minutes. Each additional visit costs $20. If you are a patient here, it is incorporated into your typical physical therapy plan of care when indicated.

Do I need to do anything specific after treatment?

No you do not.  You can continue your home program and other activities.

The physical therapists at SSOR, now with locations in Overland Park and Prairie Village, are committed to maximizing patient and customer satisfaction through effective, adjunctive treatments to our manual therapy, education, and exercise plans for you.  It would be a privilege to serve you and partner with you in your care.  Give us a call – Overland Park (913) 904-1128, or Prairie Village, (913) 904-0261.