What is Shockwave Therapy?
Extracorporeal shockwave therapy is sometimes alternatively known as shockwave biosurgery, but ESWT isn’t actually a surgery as the word is usually defined or understood in North America. It is a non-invasive and nonsurgical procedure that uses shock waves to treat painful muscular conditions. It works by stimulating the body’s natural healing processes which aid in speeding up healing. Shock wave therapy increases blood flow to the damaged areas, promoting faster muscle and tissue repair.
What conditions can Shockwave Therapy treat?
Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy can be used to treat a wide variety of musculoskeletal conditions–particularly those involving where major connective tissues attach to the bone.
Complaints involving attachment points for tendons and ligaments in major joints like the shoulder (such as the rotator cuff), elbow (epicondylitis or tennis elbow), hip, and knee (tendinitis or jumper’s knee) are common sites for ESWT treatment.
One of the areas most frequently treated with the ESWT procedure, however, is the foot. Conditions we treat using Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy include:
- Plantar Fasciitis or Fasciosis (Strained Arch)
- Achilles Tendinitis or Tendinosis
- Calcific Tendinitis or Tendinosis
- Connective Tissue Pain and degeneration
- Muscle Pain and Injuries
- Joint Injuries including work injuries and sport injuries
- Morton’s Neuromas
And as acoustic wave therapy encourages bone healing, it has been used to help treat:
- Stress Fractures
- Avascular Necrosis (A dead portion of bone)
- Slow-healing bone (Delayed unions)
- Non-healing bone (Non-unions)
- There are also urological conditions that respond to ESWT, such as Peyronie’s Disease.
When is it advised to use Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy
- When a patient has a diagnosis that is considered to be responsive to shockwave therapy.
- When simpler and less expensive treatment alternatives have failed or aren’t appropriate for some reason.
- When surgery or other more invasive treatments are alternatives.
- When there are no known contraindications to the procedure.
When Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy cannot be used?
ESWT is not typically used in the presence of bone tumors, certain metabolic bone conditions, and certain nerve or circulation disorders.
ESWT isn’t typically used in pregnant patients and locations of an open growth plate, (where the bone is still growing). It’s not currently used in areas where an infection is present, (though there is some early research suggesting shockwaves may actually help with infection).
It also shouldn’t be used in conditions or locations where gas or air is present in the body, (rare in the locations where acoustic wave therapy is typically used)–or for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Pain Physicians NY
2279 Coney Island Ave, Ste 200,
Brooklyn, NY 11223
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