What is Shockwave Therapy?

Shockwaves (also known as Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy or ESWT) are sound waves that travel faster than the speed of sound and reach deep into the tissue which can provide immediate pain relief and range restoration while stimulating regenerative healing at the cellular level.

History

Initially used for breaking up kidney stones (lithotripsy), extracorporeal shockwaves were noted to increase the density of nearby bones without harming any of the surrounding healthy tissues.

Through research, it was discovered that shockwaves could stimulate stem cell growth and trigger a healing response in many different conditions. As a result, extracorporeal shockwave therapy is excellent for treating chronic tendinopathies and complex conditions such as (click each condition for more information):

Chronic Tendinopathies

Plantar fasciitis (PLAN-tur fas-e-I-tis) is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes (plantar fascia).

Plantar fasciitis commonly causes stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As you get up and move, the pain normally decreases, but it might return after long periods of standing or when you stand up after sitting.

Plantar fasciitis is more common in runners. People who are overweight and those who wear shoes with inadequate support also have an increased risk of plantar fasciitis. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Achilles tendinitis is an overuse injury of the Achilles tendon, the band of tissue that connects calf muscles at the back of the lower leg to your heel bone.

Achilles tendinitis most commonly occurs in runners who have suddenly increased the intensity or duration of their runs. It's also common in middle-aged people who play sports, such as tennis or basketball, only on the weekends.

Most cases of Achilles tendinitis can be treated with relatively simple, at-home care under your doctor's supervision. Self-care strategies are usually necessary to prevent recurring episodes. More-serious cases of Achilles tendinitis can lead to tendon tears (ruptures) that may require surgical repair. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Patellar tendinitis is an injury to the tendon connecting your kneecap (patella) to your shinbone. The patellar tendon works with the muscles at the front of your thigh to extend your knee so that you can kick, run and jump.

Patellar tendinitis, also known as jumper's knee, is most common in athletes whose sports involve frequent jumping — such as basketball and volleyball. However, even people who don't participate in jumping sports can get patellar tendinitis.

For most people, treatment of patellar tendinitis begins with physical therapy to stretch and strengthen the muscles around the knee. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

If you’ve got a nagging pain on the outer part of your knee, especially if you’re a runner, it could be a symptom of iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome. It’s an injury often caused by activities where you bend your knee repeatedly, like running, cycling, hiking, and walking long distances.

Your IT band is a thick bunch of fibers that runs from the outside of your hips to the outside of your thigh and knee down to the top of your shinbone. If your IT band gets too tight, it can lead to swelling and pain around your knee.

IT band syndrome usually gets better with time and treatment. You don’t typically need surgery. (webMD)

Calcific tendonitis (or tendinitis) occurs when calcium deposits build up in your muscles or tendons. Although this can happen anywhere in the body, it usually occurs in the rotator cuff.

The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that connects your upper arm to your shoulder. Calcium buildup in this area can restrict the range of motion in your arm, as well as cause pain and discomfort.

Calcific tendonitis is one of the most commonTrusted Source causes of shoulder pain. You’re more likely to be affected if you perform a lot of overhead motions, such as heavy lifting, or play sports like basketball or tennis. (www.Healthline.com)

Shoulder impingement syndrome is a common cause of shoulder pain. It occurs when there is impingement of tendons or bursa in the shoulder from bones of the shoulder. Overhead activity of the shoulder, especially repeated activity, is a risk factor for shoulder impingement syndrome. Examples include: painting, lifting, swimming, tennis, and other overhead sports. Other risk factors include bone and joint abnormalities.

With impingement syndrome, pain is persistent and affects everyday activities. Motions such as reaching up behind the back or reaching up overhead to put on a coat or blouse, for example, may cause pain.

Over time, impingement syndrome can lead to inflammation of the rotator cuff tendons (tendinitis) and bursa (bursitis). If not treated appropriately, the rotator cuff tendons can start to thin and tear. (Web MD)

Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis) is a painful condition that occurs when tendons in your elbow are overloaded, usually by repetitive motions of the wrist and arm.

Despite its name, athletes aren't the only people who develop tennis elbow. People whose jobs feature the types of motions that can lead to tennis elbow include plumbers, painters, carpenters and butchers.

The pain of tennis elbow occurs primarily where the tendons of your forearm muscles attach to a bony bump on the outside of your elbow. Pain can also spread into your forearm and wrist. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Golfer's elbow is a condition that causes pain where the tendons of your forearm muscles attach to the bony bump on the inside of your elbow. The pain might spread into your forearm and wrist.

Golfer's elbow is similar to tennis elbow, which occurs on the outside of the elbow. It's not limited to golfers. Tennis players and others who repeatedly use their wrists or clench their fingers also can develop golfer's elbow.

The pain of golfer's elbow doesn't have to keep you off the course or away from your favourite activities. Rest and appropriate treatment can get you back into the swing of things. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Peroneal tendinopathy is swelling within the peroneal tendons as they pass behind the bony bump on the outside of the ankle. ESWT & Physiotherapy is an effective treatment for peroneal tendinopathy.

Groin inflammation or adductor tendonitis occurs when the adductor muscles in the groin can become inflamed, or degenerate through overuse. Symptoms include pain and stiffness at the top of the groin which can radiate down the leg. Treatment involves reducing pain and inflammation with ESWT followed by stretching and strengthening exercises.

as well as:
  • Greater trochanter pain syndrome
  • Plantar fibromatosis (Ledderhose disease)
  • De Quervain’s disease
  • Trigger finger
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Chronic scar tissue

Bone Pathologies

Osgood-Schlatter disease can cause a painful, bony bump on the shinbone just below the knee. It usually occurs in children and adolescents experiencing growth spurts during puberty.

Osgood-Schlatter disease occurs most often in children who participate in sports that involve running, jumping and swift changes of direction — such as soccer, basketball, figure skating and ballet. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

The term "shin splints" refers to pain along the shin bone (tibia) — the large bone in the front of your lower leg. Shin splints are common in runners, dancers and military recruits.

Medically known as medial tibial stress syndrome, shin splints often occur in athletes who have recently intensified or changed their training routines. The increased activity overworks the muscles, tendons and bone tissue.

Most cases of shin splints can be treated with rest, ice and other self-care measures. Wearing proper footwear and modifying your exercise routine can help prevent shin splints from recurring. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Tailbone pain — pain that occurs in or around the bony structure at the bottom of the spine (coccyx) — can be caused by trauma to the coccyx during a fall, prolonged sitting on a hard or narrow surface, degenerative joint changes, or vaginal childbirth.

Tailbone pain can feel dull and achy but typically becomes sharp during certain activities, such as sitting, rising from a seated to a standing position or prolonged standing. Defecation and sex also might become painful. For women, tailbone pain can make menstruation uncomfortable as well. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Urologic pathologies

Erectile dysfunction (impotence) is the inability to get and keep an erection firm enough for sex.

Having erection trouble from time to time isn't necessarily a cause for concern. If erectile dysfunction is an ongoing issue, however, it can cause stress, affect your self-confidence and contribute to relationship problems. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Peyronie's (pay-roe-NEEZ) disease is a noncancerous condition resulting from fibrous scar tissue that develops on the penis and causes curved, painful erections. Penises vary in shape and size, and having a curved erection isn't necessarily a cause for concern. But Peyronie's disease causes a significant bend or pain in some men.

This can prevent you from having sex or might make it difficult to get or maintain an erection (erectile dysfunction). For many men, Peyronie's disease also causes stress and anxiety. Penile shortening is another common concern. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

Skin Pathologies

Cellulite is a very common, harmless skin condition that causes lumpy, dimpled flesh on the thighs, hips, buttocks and abdomen. The condition is most prevalent in women.

Many people try, with variable success, to improve the appearance of their skin through weight loss, exercise, massage and creams marketed as a solution to cellulite. (www.Mayoclinic.org)

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