What is Shockwave Therapy?
Shockwave, or Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT), is a non-surgical, non-invasive treatment used to help chronic tendon pain and other soft tissue injuries. It works by using an external machine to produce compression air waves that travel through the skin into injured tissues to stimulate the body's natural healing response. ESWT is an effective, evidence-based treatment that is most effective when performed in conjunction with other physical therapy treatment.
What can Shockwave Therapy help?
Some of the most common injuries effectively treated with shockwave therapy are:
- Plantar fasciitis
- Achilles pain
- Golfer's/tennis elbow
- Hamstring pain
- Patellar tendon pain
- Lateral gluteal pain
What can I expect with Shockwave Therapy?
Your physical therapist will place a hand-held tool over the injured area after applying a water-based gel to the skin. You will hear the audible compression waves and may feel mild discomfort as the compression waves pass through the skin into the deeper soft tissues. Patients generally do not experience soreness after this treatment, and oftentimes feel pain relief during the same visit.
Is Shockwave Therapy safe?
Yes. Your physical therapist possesses the proper skills and training to administer shockwave therapy safely. Some precautions do exist, which your physical therapist will discuss with you, though it is quite rare for these to occur. Complications are extremely rare though may occur which include: redness, bruising, hypersensitivity, numbness or pain.
How many times will I need Shockwave Therapy?
Typically, a patient receives 4-8 treatments of shockwave therapy during their recovery process, though this can vary based on patient response and need.
Shockwave is a supplement to physical therapy, and not currently offered as a standalone treatment by Hand & Ortho.