What is Shockwave Therapy?
Shockwave therapy is a non-invasive treatment used by physiotherapists and physicians to treat musculoskeletal conditions that have resulted in persistent pain ( > 3 months) and lost mobility, and which have been resistant to conventional treatments, such as lateral epicondylitis, patellar tendinitis, or plantar fasciitis. It is a safe and effective treatment. Most people experience relief after only a few treatments – they are pain free, with mobility restored and are able to return to work and/or sport.
Shockwave therapy is also used in orthopedic conditions such as delayed or non union fractures, avascular necrosis, some urological conditions as well and in veterinary medicine.
It can be a useful treatment for chronic tendon conditions that have not responded to other treatments. 85% of patients in a study treating hamstring tendinopathy demonstrated at least 50% reduction in pain at three months.
What conditions can be treated?
This method used to treat chronic tendon conditions. Some of these conditions include;
- Lateral epicondylitis (Tennis Elbow)
- Achilles tendinopathy
- Patellar tendinopathy (Knee)
- Proximal hamstring tendinopathy
- Plantar fasciitis (foot)
- Calcific Tendonitis
What does treatment involve?
Typical treatment involves 2-5 sessions weekly intervals. The probe is placed over the injured tendon and shock waves are generated to stimulate tendon healing. Each treatment session takes 5-10 minutes to perform.
Side effects and recommendations
There are almost no side effects. Many patients find they experience mild pain or discomfort during treatment usually subsides quickly after treatment. It is advisable to avoid strenuous activity for 48 hours after treatment.
Shockwave therapy uses mechanical energy in the form of acoustic waves that increase local circulation and stimulate the body’s healing process. Treatment is targeted on the damaged tissue through the hand held applicator and can enhance breakdown of adhesions, scar tissue and calcification. Each session lasts approximately five minutes.
Shockwave therapy is a multidisciplinary device used in orthopaedics, physiotherapy, sports medicine, urology and veterinary medicine. Its main assets are fast pain relief and mobility restoration. Together with being a non-surgical therapy with no need for painkillers makes it an ideal therapy to speed up recovery and cure various indications causing acute or chronic pain.
Acoustic waves with high energy peak used in Shockwave therapy interact with tissue causing overall medical effects of accelerated tissue repair and cell growth, analgesia and mobility restoration. All the processes mentioned in this section are typically employed simultaneously and are used to treat chronic, sub-acute and acute (advanced users only) conditions.