Intramuscular Stimulation (IMS) & Acupuncture

Intramuscular Stimulation (IMS) is an effective treatment choice for chronic pain of neuropathic origin.

Pain with a neuropathic origin can present with or without traumatic injury, will usually not respond to conventional treatment methods and will last longer than the period of normal tissue healing. The use of IMS and determination of neuropathic pain is done via a comprehensive physical examination done by an IMS trained physiotherapist.

IMS treatment itself consists of inserting a fine acupuncture needle into the affected tissue. The treatment is often referred to as dry needling, as there is no substance being injected into the body. The sites of needling may be tight, taut and tender muscle bands, or may also be along the spine as well. The needle may cause the muscle to contract (cramping sensation), before a relaxing and lengthening of the muscle occurs.

The end result of an IMS treatment is a release of muscle shortening, along with desensitization of sensitive areas. Treatment for conditions being treated by IMS are usually once a week, and the number of treatments needed vary by the individual and the condition being treated.

Some common issues treated by IMS are:

  • Whiplash
  • Low back pain
  • Chronic headaches
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Chronic muscle strains.


Acupuncture has stood the test of time (over 3500 years) and can trace its roots to Traditional Chinese Medicine. This treatment modality involves inserting a fine needle into pre-determined points to elicit a specific response.

Unlike IMS, acupuncture aims to balance the body’s energy thereby promoting healing, decreasing pain, and improving overall function.