What is Shockwave Therapy?
Extracorpeal Shockwave Therapy is a non- invasive modality used by Physiotherapists in combination with exercise prescription to return a tendon and/or muscle to normal function and activity. Shockwave Therapy is well known for its pain relief benefits. Shockwaves are characterized by jump change in pressure, high amplitude and non-periodicity. Through research, we now know that it has a role in returning a degenerative tendon into a reactive tendon. However, it also does have an analgesic effect.
How does Shockwave Therapy work?
Shockwave Therapy emits high energy impulses to the injured area, stimulating the bodies natural healing processes. Using this modality increases circulation to the localised area and promotes regeneration and reparative processes of bone, tendons and other soft tissues along with the enhancement of calcification breakdown. Pain relief by Shockwave Therapy is best achieved when the machine is used a noxious stimuli via the “pain gate theory”. This means that in order to reduce the pain experienced from a tendinopathy, the shockwave session must be “uncomfortable” or involve a low-mid level of pain. Shockwave essentially breaks down this tendon and allows inflammation and remodelling to occur. The actual application of the shockwave therapy typically only lasts for around 5 minutes.
Injuries and Conditions Shockwave Therapy works for:
- Tendinopathies (achilles, tennis elbow, rotator cuff)
- Plantar Fasicitis
- Bone (eg. heel spur)
- Calcification (rotator cuff)
- Jumper’s knee
- Hip Pain
- Shin Splints