What is the Physiolab S1 and how will it help me?
The S1 unit is designed to provide you with pain relief and dampen the inflammatory response well into the healing phase be it as a result of exercise, injury or post-injury. The intermittent compression is excellent at helping to reduce the swelling and improve function in the injured area. The combination of the two will stimulate the healing and repair process of the tissue and have you back to performing in the shortest time possible.
What is the benefit of this compared to ice?
The S1 can deliver between 6 to 12°C of cold water and from 25 to 75mmHg of compression to the injured area. This precision of treatment results in a quicker and deeper penetration of cold to the tissue which simply isn’t available with ice. The continuous monitoring of the fluid temperature by the machine, ensures the treatment remains consistent.
Should I put it on as cold as possible? What do the different temperatures mean?
Pain relief will occur when skin temperature gets below 13°C. The S1 can achieve this in as little as 3 minutes from the start of treatment. As the injury progresses and your pain becomes less you will not need to make the tissue as cold. Reducing cell metabolism can be achieved between 5 to 15°C of skin temperature which will help to prevent secondary cell death and regulate the inflammatory response.
Does the pressure make a difference?
Immediately after injury, static compression can help to reduce the bleeding to the site. After the initial 24 to 48 hours, intermittent compression will promote the infiltration of white blood cells to the damaged area which will help to clear away any debris and start to generate the scar tissue. This will ultimately result in repair of the damaged tissue.
What is the optimal treatment time? Is longer better?
Not necessarily. The optimal treatment time depends on the tissue that has been damaged and how deep it is. We can reduce the deep muscle temperature by more than 10°C in 30 minutes. For many injuries 10 to 15 minutes will be more than sufficient but our useful ‘how to’ guides or expert team will be happy to guide you further with regards to your specific injury.
What injuries does it treat?
The S1 can be used to treat all soft tissue (muscle, ligament and tendon) injuries as well as bone and joint injuries. Each treatment is 100% bespoke to you as established by your clinician. Our expert team of physiotherapists are here to help you if you have decided to rent the product for your own personal use. The product is flexible and designed to be used from initial injury through rehabilitation to being back onto the pitch and recovery between performances.
When should I start to use it post injury?
The treatment can begin immediately post-injury. If you are unlucky enough to have been injured and do not have access to a unit, you can order one through our website.
What kind of ice should I use? Does it work with just water?
The machine does need ice to generate sufficient levels of cold. Any ice is fine from cubed to crushed. If you use crushed ice you will need to replace the water every couple of cycles. Cubed ice should last for 5 to 6 hours.
Should you not have access to ice - use water from a fridge or as cold as you can get. Replace this after each use.
Is it hygienic? Is there any risk of infection?
The fluid is sealed within our patented therapy packs and drained fully at the end of each treatment to prevent the build-up of mould. Each pack is made of surgical grade fabric and can be wiped down with an anti-bacterial wipe after treatment. All our packs are designed to provide optimal fit for you, with a variety of sizes and shapes specific to every injured area.
Are there any contraindications to using physiolab?
Cryotherapy or ice should not be used when:
-severe vascular impairment ( diabetes, ischemia etc)
- cold alllergy
- Paroxysmal cold hemoglobinuria
- Raynaud's disease
- Rheumatoid arthritis
Compression therapy should not be used when:
-Congestive heart failure
-Significant vascular compromise or arteriosclerosis
It is always recommended that you check with your Physio, GP or Consultant before starting a new treatment with Physiolab. Also check that your surgeon is happy that you use it post operatively. Physio rentals is happy to talk to your surgeon or arrange a demonstration if your medical professional is unfamliar with the product.
What is the science behind the Physiolab S1?
Early application of cold and compression following injury or exercise helps to reduce bleeding, inflammation, pain, metabolism, blood flow and oedema.
Subsequent regular treatments can also help to reduce an excessive inflammatory response, which can ease side effects such as pain following surgery and help accelerate recovery.
How do I operate the Physiolab?
For whom is Compex designed ?
Compexelectrotherapy is designed for sportsmen and women:
To support their training and improve their performance, to speed up healing after certain injuries, to prepare for their season, to recover more quickly after intense effort, to provide pain relief.
For physiotherapists: For rehabilitation, pain relief, treatment of specific neurological pathologies, orthopaedics, rheumatology, traumatology, urology, vascular conditions.
For those who want to look after their body: To keep in shape, for massages, to relieve heavy legs, low back or cervical pains, to support a physical rehabilitation programme, also to strengthen the abdominals or other parts of the body.
What are the benefits of Compex electrotherapy?
Compexelectrotherapy uses very high quality and high comfort level currents.
Electrostimulation can be used in an intense way in complete safety:
Electrostimulation has no side effects; it is a non-invasive treatment method, often an effective alternative to drugs, for pain treatment
By protecting your joints
Without causing nervous fatigue
What is compex electrotherapy?
Electrotherapy is a tried and tested medical treatment method, used for rehabilitation, pain treatment and for training sportsmen and women.
The working principle behind electrostimulation is very simple. It faithfully reproduces the process by which muscle contractions are controlled by the brain. So, with electrostimulation, the activity in your muscles is triggered by electrical impulses sent by our devices to the motor nerve. Your muscle cannot distinguish between a contraction triggered by your brain and one triggered by electrostimulation. This is known as electrically induced contraction.
Who can use muscle stimulation?
For many years, electrostimulation was used solely by healthcare professionals such as physical therapists. Over time, athletes who have discovered the benefits of electrostimulation in healing their injuries have picked up on this technique to help improve their muscular performance. Electrostimulation has now become a technique that is accessible to everyone.
to optimize their muscular qualities: what works on wasted or weakened muscles also works on healthy muscles. With electrostimulation, the muscles selected can be given a very intense workout. This workout can be customized to develop specific qualities depending on the program selected: endurance, strength or resistance for example
to speed up recovery after an intense workout and limit aches and pains.
to prevent injuries, for example twisted ankles, by reinforcing certain muscles (in this case the peroneal muscles).
to relieve pain, for example tendon problems or muscle contraction problems.
Those who want to stay in good shape
A sedentary lifestyle has harmful effects on the muscular system. Muscles lose power, become tired more easily and are no longer able to perform correctly their role of maintaining the skeleton and the different organs. Other than the detrimental consequences on the shape of the body, this muscular insufficiency can be the cause of pain, for example lumbar pains whose frequency is increased in people without efficient abdominal muscles.
Electrostimulation can restore or maintain a toned muscular system capable of ensuring effective maintenance of the body and preventing numerous pains.
Physiotherapists talk about electrotherapy. They use it particularly for rehabilitation:
For example after being unable to move for a while due to an injury, muscles lose certain qualities that electrostimulation will help find again. Physical therapists therefore use electrostimulation to strengthen certain muscles.
Hemiplegics for whom electrostimulation is used to improve their ability to raise the ball of the foot and improve control of their muscles.
treating different forms of incontinence and preventing it after labour.
relieving chronic or acute pains, for example cervical pains, lumbago or lumbosciatica.
improving the disorders of people suffering from circulatory problems.This can range from the feeling of heavy legs to arterial insufficiency which often reduces the walking range of these people due to pain.
People suffering from pain. Pain is a sign that can be caused by many things. Relieving pain is now a priority for which electrostimulation is ideal. Bad backs, joint pains and neuralgia are common indications of electrostimulation for pain relief which can be done at home or under the supervision of a healthcare professional.
Electrostimulation has huge benefits, including:
making the muscles work without putting too much strain on joints, as is the case with weights used with traditional muscle building equipment.
being able to target precisely a muscular group to work on ; This is very useful for physical therapists who can thus maintain the qualities of the muscles which are impossible to use when a person is immobilized. It is also very useful for athletes who want to have a workout on the muscles more specifically involved in their discipline.
being able to combine muscular stimulation with pain relief treatment to make some patients recover quicker.
being able to relieve pain by avoiding or limiting the use of drugs that cause unwanted side effects.
Can muscle voume be increased with compex?
Yes. The work carried out during Compex sessions (depending on the programme selected) induces adaptations in the muscle fibres, with one of them being the increase in muscle volume.
Has significant improvement in strength been observed with compex?
Yes. A good example for us to look at is the study carried out on professional basketball players. This study compared the relaxation of a group of players who trained with Compex alongside their usual training, and a group that trained only in the traditional manner. The group that trained with Complex showed an improvement in explosive strength that clearly exceeded that of the control group (+30%).
Can compex sessions be carried out during voluntary training?
Compex sessions can be carried out outside or during voluntary training. If you wish to do both types of training at the same time, we recommend that you start with voluntary training. In some cases, particularly for resistance work, it can be beneficial to start with a Compex session in order to generate a state of “pre-fatigue” in the muscle fibres.
Is training with compex also suitable for adolescents or children?
Compex is obviously not a toy, and it must not be used by children without adult supervision. Having said that, as Compex prevents overtaxing the bones and tendons, unlike classic weight training, it can be used to good effect to increase muscle strength in young people without causing any lesions.
What does compex bring to traditional rehabilitation?
Compex will enable you to increase yourrehab hours, enhance rehab quality and improve recovery. Regardless of the type of injury, the level of muscle stimulation of the Compex programmes always enhances recovery. You can train more, better and in less time: save time, and increase effectiveness and recovery.
Why does rehab with compex not cause trauma ?
With Compex, the muscle contractions always develop gradually with no sudden pull on the tendons or joints. This means that it is not possible to cause muscle or tendon trauma. However, as the muscle work is intense, muscle soreness is frequent at the start of training, just like when starting muscle training with weights.
Are there any absolute contraindications?
Contraindications of electrostimulation are rare:
People fitted with electronic devices such as pace-makers and intra-cardiac defibrillators.
People suffering from epilepsy.
Stimulate the abdominal area in pregnant women.
Place the electrodes on the front and sides of the neck.
Stimulate the thoracic area of people with cardiac arrhythmia.
Stimulate the lower legs in case of venous thrombosis or severe arterial obstruction (ischemia).
Stimulate the abdominal area in case of abdominal or inguinal hernia.
In case of particular health problems, it is always recommended that you seek the advice of a healthcare professional.
Are there any long term risks of muscle stimulation?
No. Muscular stimulation and electrotherapy in general has existed for decades and no problems have ever been found.
Can the use of excessively high intensity levels cause injury?
No. It is not possible to cause injury because the intensity is increased progressively during the contraction period to ensure that there is no risk of muscle tears.
Where do I place the electrodes?
Where to place the electrodes is indicated in the Compex manuals for the different muscle groups. You will also find this info on the compex app. find it on the app store - Compex coach app.
Alternatively you would have been shown this by your physiotherapist. Physio Rentals offer 15minute chargeable skype sessions for further training with a physiotherapist
Is there a danger from badly placed electrodes?
No. There is no danger if the electrodes are badly positioned. The stimulation will simply become less effective.
Which intensity level must be reached for complementary programmes (capillarisation, muscle pain, reduce muscle tension etc)
These programmes do not require the use of maximum intensities. However, it is essential that the intensities are high enough to produce good, visible muscular twitches.
Which intensity level must be reached for the training programmes (muscle atrophy, strength , resistance etc)
Although the highest level possible (but it must remain bearable) will recruit the highest possible number of muscle fibres. The most effective way of deciding on the level is your own judgement and advice of your physiotherapist. At a minimum the intensity should induce a muscle contraction.
You may be advised to keep the joint still (Isometric contraction), and therefore the muscle contraction must not exceed the level where you are no longer able to keep the joint still.
Or you may be advised to move the joint against the contraction (eccentric). Again the muscle contraction must not be so great that you are unable to move the joint.
15 minute chargable skype sessions are available with physiotherapists if you are unsure.
Why do I also feel twitches during the rest phases?
The muscle is also stimulated during the rest phases causing muscle twitches. These twitches help to improve recovery between contractions. They must be clearly visible.
Is electrical muscle stimulation dangerous?
It was initially in the medical domain that the electrostimulation technique was developed and proved its effectiveness, as backed up by numerous scientific publications made on its different indications. However, for many years, the currents used did not have the same characteristics as those authorized by current technology, which on the one hand prevented its use for numerous contraindications and on the other hand limited its results due to the difficulty in sometimes reaching a minimum threshold of efficiency. Today, contraindications are rare (implanted defibrillator-pacemaker, epilepsy, abdomen of pregnant women) and the efficiency considerably improved with the combined effect of significant technological progress and huge advances made in the field of physiology.
The quality of the micro-impulses generated by the Compex stimulators enable the accumulation of electricity in the tissues and the resulting risk of burning to be avoided. Hence, even long-term or continuous applications, as is sometimes the case for some pain relief programs, present no risk of burning.
Neither has any undesirable effect ever been experienced in subjects using electrostimulation on a daily basis for many years, as is sometimes the case for some medical indications.
All the stimulators in the Compex line, including those designed to be used by individuals, comply with all European and international standards on medical devices and guarantee completely safe use.
The most spectacular progress has been recorded for the indications of electrostimulation that consist of developing muscular qualities and are similar to muscle building. Indeed, given the power of the muscular contractions induced by stimulation, it is legitimate to analyze the potential risk on joints or tendons as well as on the muscle itself.
AND FOR MY JOINTS?
The basic use of electrostimulation consists of working on a muscle whose length does not vary when it contracts (isometric contraction). This imposes a static workout, without movement, in an intermediary position where pressures on joints are reduced to their minimum value. A workout using electrostimulation is therefore particularly "economical" for joints, particularly if we compare it to some voluntary exercises requiring great movements and often carried out at high speed, which is very restrictive for the joints.
AND FOR MY TENDONS?
The tendon is a fibrous elastic structure running alongside the muscle fibers enabling the solid anchoring of certain muscles on the bone structure.
Just like muscle tissue, the tendon develops in response to the request made of it. As it runs alongside the muscle, muscular contraction induces a state of tension which spreads to the tendon. The same occurs when the contraction is initiated by stimulation. It is an illusion that stimulation only allows the muscular tissue on which the tendinous tissue relies to develop, causing an imbalance along it that could be harmful for the tendon.
ELECTROSTIMULATION AND MUSCLE
Correctly used, electrostimulation causes contractions that are even more spectacular when they are localized on a single muscle or muscular group. Motivated individuals familiar with the technical develop up to 100% of their maximum strength simply through electrostimulation and without any voluntary participation.
Despite this, no muscular injury such as tearing has ever happened during an electrostimulation session, even in people who use maximum intensities. The reason why muscles tear is obviously when they are put under great pressure but above all when the muscle contracts abruptly as is sometimes the case when practising certain sports. In electrostimulation, the muscle contracts progressively, over a time at least triple that where the risk of muscle tearing is present.
Is electrical stimulation painful?
Most often during stimulation you will feel a simple tingling sensation caused by the stimulation current, which is inevitable. However, the high quality of the Compex currents guarantees you get the most comfortable stimulation current possible.
Let's consider two types of electrical muscle stimulation programs which do not produce the same sensations:
Pain relief and wellness: the electric sensation is light, hardly perceptible for some people. It is restricted to tingling or tickling, so a completely comfortable sensation.
Muscle building: for the muscle building programs, the "electric" sensation may be more pronounced, however, most often, it is the power of the contractions which limits the progression, much more than the "electric" sensation. All users quickly get used to the sensation felt, which makes progression quite easy.
Why is it encouraged to use the maximum intensity tolerable for muscle reinforcement type programs?
When aiming to develop muscular qualities, the intensity of stimulation is crucial. The higher this intensity of stimulation, the higher the percentage of muscle fibers that are working. You must always therefore work with the maximum intensity you are able to tolerate.
To make progress, you will have to increase the intensities used throughout each session and also from one session to the next. This is why when an electrostimulation session is serious training, it is not always pleasant and it is not possible to perform another activity at the same time.
How many times can the compex electrodes be used?
Depending on your skin type, between 15 and 30 times. Some 30 applications are possible on skin that is clean, non-greasy and shaved.
Place electrodes on the on strip and within the sealed bag between use.
How do I set up and use the wired compex?
How do I set up and use the wireless compex?
How to charge the wired compex?