Since 1968 Mettler Electronics has produced shortwave diathermy (SWD) unit that produces comforting deep heat in muscle tissues. Shortwave diathermy is used when the clinician needs to provide deep heat to a larger area than normally covered by ultrasound. The illustration below shows the relative penetration of various heating modalities.
Auto*Therm® 390 is a pulsed and continuous shortwave diathermy. Weighing only fifteen pounds, this unit can be easily carried between treatment rooms or to the patient. The basic unit comes with 2 (12 x 18 cm) soft-rubber plate capacitive applicators with flexible cables, 6 felt spacers, 2 cloth covers, 2 elastic straps, power cord and instructions.
Weight: 15 lbs., (6.8 kg)
Dimensions: 7 in (H) x 14 in (W) x 16.5 in (D), 18 cm (H) x 36 cm (W) x 42 cm (D)
Warranty: 2 years, one year on applicators and accessories
Q: Why would I use diathermy over ultrasound?
A: Ultrasound is very effective for treating small specific areas where diathermy treats a much larger surface area and penetrates relatively deeper.
Q: Is diathermy reimbursed?
A: Yes, diathermy has its own cpt code.
Q: what is the difference between the 390 and the 390x?
A: Both units are the same. However, the 390 is the portable version that utilizes rubber plate capacitive electrodes. The 390x is the full version that includes the unit, treatment cart, arm, and coil induction drum applicator.
Q: What is the difference between the capacitive applicators and the drum applicator?
A: The capacitive applicators are used for shallow penetration and the induction drum is used for deep penetration.
Q: Do we have to isolate our diathermy unit in a separate room like in the old days?
A: No. With today’s technology and safety requirements, diathermy does not have to be isolated.
Q: Do I still have to worry about metal objects in the body when using diathermy?
A: When using the continuous mode, you should be concerned about metal objects in and on the body when using diathermy. Metal has the tendency to heat up in the surrounding area. In the pulsed mode, the unit does not have the capability to heat metal.
Q: Can diathermy be treated over the patients clothing?
A: We recommend that you remove the clothing around the treatment area and use a terry cloth towel directly on the skin. You then place the drum directly on the towel.
Q: What is pulsed diathermy used for?
A: Just like pulsed ultrasound you will get the mechanical effects of diathermy without having any thermal properties.
Q: What is the biggest advantage of diathermy?
A: Diathermy treats a much larger surface area as well as having relatively deeper penetration levels than other thermal modalities. Diathermy is also an unattended modality allowing the clinician to attend to other patients while the treatment is running?