Shockwave therapy is a treatment that uses shockwaves, or acoustic pulses, to initiate a healing response in the body. It is similar to ultrasound treatment in that it uses sound waves to go into the body’s tissue to kickstart a physiological healing response. Shockwave therapy differs from ultrasound because it uses high intensity, acoustic pulse waves to penetrate into the tissues as opposed to ultrasound’s gentle waves.
Shockwave therapy creates a controlled irritation in the area being treated. This changes the circulation to the area and increases cellular metabolism therefore initiating the body’s internal repair. In short, shockwave therapy activates the body’s self healing mechanisms.
Shockwave therapy has been shown to be highly effective in treating:
- Calcification tendinitis (mostly in the rotator cuff tendons)
- Lateral or medial epicondylitis (tennis or golfer’s elbow)
- Plantar fasciitis
- Achilles tendinitis or achillodynia (pain from dorsal heel spurs)
- Shin splints
- Patellar tendinitis (Jumper’s knee)
- Greater trochanteric pain syndrome (gluteal tendinitis)
- Can also be effective in trigger point therapy and other tendon irritations (ie. ITB friction syndrome)
There are generally 3-8 treatment sessions and a session itself lasts approximately 10-15 minutes, depending on the condition. Provided you have a clear diagnosis, clinical studies suggest that this type of treatment has an 80 – 85% chance of improving your condition.
Review further evidence and research on Shockwave Therapy at Shockwave Canada’s website.