Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT) – Case Study
At Physiotherapy Matters we have now been offering Shockwave Therapy for a year and are still one of the only clinics in the region to offer this highly effective revolutionary treatment. Shockwave Therapy has is recommended for a number of soft tissue pathologies, which is where we have found it to have excellent outcomes with a number of our clients suffering from chronic soft tissue related pathologies over the past 12 months, here are a few examples of such cases:
Patella (knee) and Achilles Tendon:
We have had a number of clients suffering from chronic Patella (knee) and Achilles Tendon problems who have tried all of the usually treatment options, including ultrasound, rest, graded activity, home rehabilitations program, soft tissue mobilisations, acupuncture, and orthotics. All of these treatment modalities for these clients has resulted in short term symptoms relief, with symptoms returning once they increase activity levels. We have used 4 sessions of Shockwave Therapy alongside a rehabilitation program for these clients which has been found to be highly effective in significantly improving symptoms, with reduced pain, reduced tendon thickness and tenderness (noted from palpation), increased activity levels and improved strength, resulting in a return to hobbies including running, squash and football.
Plantar Fasciitis (heel pain):
Plantar Fasciitis is often a chronic niggling problem that we see regularly in clinic where previous treatment options have had short term relief at best. We have used Shockwave Therapy with clients over the past 12 months who have found it to be highly effective, allowing them to take those first steps in the morning symptoms free, which have previously been reported as like
Tennis and Golfers Elbow (lateral and medial elbow pain):
Tennis and Golfers elbows are not pathologies that only effect tennis and golf players! We see these problems regularly in clinic and within the Occupations Health (Plantar Fasciitis is often a chronic niggling problem that we see regularly in clinic where previous treatment options have had short term relief at best. We have used Shockwave Therapy with clients over the standing on a drawing pin!
Patella rest, graded activity, home rehabilitations program, soft tissue mobilisations, acupuncture, and orthotics. All of these treatment modalities for these clients has resulted in short term symptoms relief, with symptoms returning once they increase activity levels. We have used 4 sessions of Shockwave Therapy alongside a rehabilitation program
What is ESWT?
Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy is a non-invasive treatment that assists with the body’s natural healing process. It involves sending shockwaves through your skin towards the painful/affected /damaged tissue.
How does it work?
The treatment produces an anti-inflammatory response which increases metabolic and circulatory activity. This stimulates your bodies healing process thereby promoting recovery and remodelling of damaged/dysfunctional tissues. ESWT aids in the breakdown of scar tissue and calcification and can also stimulate pain relief through neural mechanisms (reduction of nerve signals to the brain.)
What conditions can ESWT treat?
Shockwave therapy can be used to treat chronic tendon inflammation in the hip, knee, shoulder, elbow, Achilles and sole of the foot. It is recommended for conditions such as heel pain (plantar fasciitis), tennis or golfers elbow, tendinitis of the shoulder, tendinopathies of the Achilles tendon, hamstring and patella, as well as other painful conditions such as trochanteric bursitis and shin splints.
What are the Benefits?
• Stimulates the body’s natural self-healing process
• Immediate reduction in pain
• Increased Range of movement
• May eliminate need for surgery
ESWT is a highly effective treatment for chronic tendon disorders and is widely used in practise. Research demonstrates a 70-80% success rate across a vast range of conditions. It may not work for everyone, but it helps most people when other conservative treatments have failed. It has helped many people to undergo invasive or surgical treatments
Treatments should last no longer than 10 minutes’ dependent on pain severity and history of the condition. You should expect to attend 3-4 treatment sessions, once weekly apart for the best results.
How to prepare for treatment?
• No pain relief prior to treatment sessions
• Stop use of Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (for example ibuprofen, aspirin) 14 days prior to first treatment, throughout treatment and 6 weeks after final treatment session
• Continue with stretching and eccentric loading programme
• Adequate rest (Avoid continuous overloading of pain site)
• No strenuous, pain provoking or high impact activity for 48 hours post treatment
What to expect during after treatment?
Some soreness and pain may occur as ESWT initiates an inflammatory reaction in the tissues. You may experience some side effects after treatment including skin redness, bruising, haematoma, localised red spots and numbness. All of these should resolve in a few days prior to you next treatment. There is a small risk of tendon/ligament rupture and soft tissue damage. You may experience pain during and temporarily after treatment
ESWT should not be completed if you:
• Are Pregnant
• Are taking Anti-platelets/anticoagulants
• Have a blood clotting disorder
• Have been diagnosed with bone cancer
• Have a cardiac pacemaker
• Have had a steroid injection in the last 12 weeks/previous tendon rupture
At Physiotherapy Matters we offer a free triage telephone service, if you have a queries about your condition and how shockwave therapy can help you please call us on 0191 2858701