Frequently Asked Questions
Question 1: I have heard of trigger point dry needling or have already taken a course in trigger point dry needling. How is Intramuscular Stimulation - IMS trigger point dry needling different from other forms of trigger point dry needling?
Answer: IMS trigger point dry needling is based on a neuroanatomic and pathophysiological model of myofascial trigger point pain that provides a rationale for the physical examination of the patient which forms the basis for treatment. Students will be taught how to evaluate and select appropriate patients for treatment based on this model, and how to integrate postural exercise, manual therapy and electro-therapeutics into a comprehensive rehabilitation program. The value and limitations of MRIs and EMG studies in this patient population will be discussed.
IMS trigger point dry needling is highly effective in safely and efficiently reducing pain and restoring normal range-of-motion while leading to true functional rehabilitation.
Question 2: Is the LearnIMS Course an approved or accredited course in post-graduate instruction and training in trigger point dry needling that satisfies state and county requirements/prerequisites necessary to legally perform dry needling?
Answer: NO. Each state and county has its own regulations for healthcare providers and it is the participant’s responsibility to know the laws, rules and regulations for their license and the location of practice. The LearnIMS Course is NOT approved or accredited by any state or county licensing or regulatory health agency or entity, and it is the responsibility of the participant to determine and ensure that employment of IMS is within the scope of practice for their professional license and the jurisdiction within which they employ it and that they have satisfactorily completed all prerequisite accredited courses/training required by the governing health care authorities of that jurisdiction
Steven R. Goodman, M.D., P.S., Inc and LearnIMS are NOT responsible for the implementation of the technique the student will be trained in, the laws and regulations the participant is bound by, or how the participant chooses to utilize the technique if it is outside the guidelines in which they were trained.
Question 3: Are continuing education credits (Continuing Medical Education/CME, Continuing Education/CE) offered by the LearnIMS Course?
Answer: NO. The LearnIMS Course is NOT accredited by any medical or physical therapy organization for continuing education credits. Upon successful completion of the course you will be given a certificate indicating that you have completed twenty-seven (27) hours of advanced instruction in IMS, a form of trigger point dry needling. You may independently apply to your state licensing board for continuing education credits, and LearnIMS will provide additional verification of successful completion, course syllabus and Dr. Goodman’s CV if requested in writing.
Question 4: If the state and county jurisdiction where I practice does not include dry needling in the scope of practice for physical therapists can I still take the LearnIMS Course?
Answer: Yes, you may take the LearnIMS Course but it is your responsibility to know the laws and regulations for the state and county where you practice. If trigger point dry needling is NOT within the scope of practice where you practice, completion of the LearnIMS Course will NOT make it legal for you to practice dry needling in that jurisdiction.
Question 5: At the completion of the LearnIMS Course will I be able to immediately return home and begin using IMS dry needling in my practice?
Answer: The goal of the LearnIMS Course is to provide you with all of the education, technical instruction, supplies, and support material to safely and competently perform IMS dry needling immediately upon its completion. You may however ONLY employ IMS dry needling immediately upon completion of the LearnIMS Course IF dry needling is within the scope of practice for your profession where you practice AND you have satisfied all prerequisite accredited courses required by your state and county health care licensing and regulatory authorities.
Question 6: Is IMS dry needling an insurance reimbursable procedure?
Answer: IMS dry needling is reimbursable by some but not all insurance. It depends on where you practice and the specific insurance and plan. More information on billing for dry needling can be found at:
Question 7: What types of conditions/diagnoses will I be able to treat upon completion of the LearnIMS Course?
Answer: You will be able to successfully treat common conditions including neck and low back pain, rotator cuff tendonosis, lateral and medial epicondylosis, tension headache, gluteal bursitis, iliotibial band syndrome, runner’s knee, Achilles tendonosis, and others.
Question 8: What is the cost of the supplies necessary to provide IMS?
Answer: You will be provided with (50) monofilament needles as part of your course registration fee. Additional needles cost on average $15.00 for one hundred (100) needles. During an IMS treatment you typically use three to five needles. You will be provided with a list of suppliers for needles.
You will also need a sharps container, latex or nitrile gloves, alcohol wipes, and facial tissue. These can all be obtained through any hospital/medical supply catalog.
Question 9: When and where are LearnIMS courses held?
Answer: Courses are conducted on selected dates and at varied locations. See the page tabs "LearnIMS Course" and "Registration" for announcements with scheduled dates and locations. If you would like us contact you about the course schedule, please go to the "Contact" page of this website and send us a message with your request.
Question 10: Why do I need to purchase the pre-requisite required reading books?
Answer: Each registered participant must provide their own instructional reference books. This requirement is described on this website - see the page titled LearnIMS Course. These required reference books (hard copy) are needed before, during, and after completion of the LearnIMS course. The professional practice of IMS requires that all practitioners have immediate ready access, either in their treatment room and at least in their office, to the required textbooks. They are used as bedside treatment manuals and are required for safe practice.