Shockwave Therapy

Shockwave therapy

Extra-corporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT), known simply as Shockwave Therapy, is a treatment used to treat soft tissue injuries, ligaments and tendons. It has been used in Sports Medicine clinics worldwide for a number of years and is becoming a popular treatment for plantar fascia dysfunction (fasciitis) and insertional Achilles tendinopathy. Scientific evidence has proven it to be extremely effective for plantar fasciitis with improvement in pain levels after 3 sessions for over 70% of people.

Common conditions:

  • Plantar Heel Pain/Plantar Fasciosis
  • Chronic Achilles Tendionopathy
  • Shin Splints
  • Patella Tendinopathy (Jumper’s Knee)
  • Neuroma
  • Heel Spurs
  • Insertional Pain
  • Chronic Tendinopathy
  • Many other Musculoskeletal conditions

How Shockwave Therapy works:

Using a handheld applicator, shockwaves are sent directly through the injury site. The shockwaves are generated when compressed air drives the ballistic projectile to the shock transmitters. This release of acoustic waves is transmitted through the skin to the damaged tissue, promoting regeneration and reparative processes of the bones, tendons and surrounding soft tissues.

The shockwaves:

  • stimulate blood supply and new cell growth
  • introduce microtrauma which allows the reactivation of the inflammatory and catabolic processes in chronic damaged tissues
  • appear to break up calcified damaged cells allowing them to be removed and regenerated
  • stimulate collagen production
  • reduce the transmission of pain signals by lowering pain mediators ‘Substance P’
  • release trigger points to relief muscle tensions

What to expect

Your Podiatrist will locate the area of pain through palpation. The shockwave impulses are then delivered using a hand-held device. It takes about five minutes to deliver a single treatment.  The treatment is generally said to be uncomfortable, rather than painful and is well tolerated by the vast majority of patients. This process is repeated multiple times with ideally a week between treatments. Depending on your condition, a total of 3 – 6 treatments are usually required.  Some patients notice an immediate improvement in their pain, however the best results occur 12 weeks after the initial treatment, once the tissue has had a chance to regenerate. Shockwave therapy is much less risky and intrusive than cortisone injection and surgery, with no needles, anaesthetics, or scars to worry about.

To determine whether Shockwave Therapy is right for you, contact us for an appointment with one of our Podiatrists. We will thoroughly examine and assess your condition and discuss the treatment options to create a plan tailored to your needs. Often Shockwave Therapy is used in conjunction with other Podiatry services, such as strapping, Orthotics and footwear advice.