WHAT IS SHOCKWAVE?
Shockwave therapy (Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy or ESWT) is an effective non-invasive, non-surgical procedure that uses audible, low energy sound waves that are passed through the skin to the injured part of the body. The energy increases blood flow to the area and promotes regeneration and the reparative processes of the bones, tendons and other soft tissues. Shockwave can be uncomfortable for some, but most patients do adjust to the discomfort during their sessions.
WHY SHOULD I HAVE SHOCKWAVE THERAPY?
Shockwave is usually offered to patients who have not responded well enough to other treatments, such as physiotherapy, orthotics (insoles or leg braces), rest, ice therapy and pain relief. It is a minimally invasive treatment that has strong evidence behind it for the treatment of tendon dysfunction and pain, also known as tendinopathy or tendinitis, however it can also be used on other areas throughout the body. It is not essential to have explored all avenues of conservative care prior to having shockwave therapy as many of our patients can have physiotherapy alongside it.
WHAT CAN IT TREAT?
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) supports the use of shockwave therapy and there is a very good body of evidence to indicate high levels of effectiveness particularly in the following conditions:
Patellar (knee) and hamstring tendinopathies
Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis)
Calcific tendonitis in the shoulder
Trochanteric (hip) bursitis