Shockwave Therapy A New Tool In Chronic Musculoskeletal Conditions

Shockwave Therapy A New Tool In Chronic Musculoskeletal Conditions

Shockwave Therapy At Sydney Physio Clinic

At Sydney Physio Clinic we are pleased to be able offer our patients access to shockwave therapy as a part of our services. Shockwave therapy is a relatively new tool used in the fight against many chronic musculoskeletal conditions. It can be an effective tool in the conservative treatment of soft tissue pain where previously conservative measures have failed to resolve those notoriously stubborn complaints such as Achilles tendinopathy, rotator cuff tendinopathy tennis elbow and plantar fasciitis. Shockwave Therapy at Sydney Physio Clinic provides a treatment option to patients suffering these chronic conditions without the need for injections, medication, or surgery…

Radial Shockwave Therapy (or ESWT) the type of shockwave used at our practice is a treatment approach that was ultimately adapted from the therapeutic use of shockwaves to treat kidney stones. A basic principle behind shockwave therapy are the use of high pressured acoustic shock waves that travel through the skin to breakdown targeted tissue and stimulate tissue repair, essentially kick starting the body’s natural healing mechanisms.

Chronic Musculoskeletal Conditions Shockwave Therapy Treats

Shockwave therapy has undergone numerous clinical research trials and has has research results supporting shockwave therapy use in the treatment of a number of chronic musculoskeletal conditions such as:

Some impressive results have been reported in previously hard to manage musculoskeletal conditions, conditions that have failed to respond to prior conventional treatment regimes and approaches. Shockwave therapy is a relatively new tool that physiotherapist have at their disposal in the fight to help manage the above listed conditions. The use of shockwave therapy however is not limited to these conditions, as the use of body of research and understanding around the use of shockwave therapy grows the application for its use grows too. It is not uncommon to hear of practitioners achieving good results using the therapy on other musculoskeletal complaints including low back pain and neck pain.

How Many Shockwave Therapy Sessions Are Required?

This is always open to individual variations between patients, severity and chronicity of conditions but below are a few standard guidelines for the use of shockwave at what to expect regarding its use and potential results.

  • Shockwave therapy usually takes about three to six sessions per area treated to have the desired effect.
  • The treatment sessions are frequently conducted relatively close together, ideally spaced at one to two week intervals.
  • A session takes in the area of 5-10 minutes to complete. Following application the therapy helps kick start the self-healing process.
  • The treatment itself is uncomfortable but this discomfort subsides quickly following cessation of the treatment and people may experience a period of analgesia following treatment.
  • Patients may experience lasting relief from shockwave therapy in as little as 10 days after the initial treatment, however some cases it may require weeks for any pain relief to occur.
  • Shockwave therapy helps to reduce pain, increase mobility, helping restore function and improving quality of life.

What Should I Expect During A Shockwave Therapy Session?

All new patients need be assessed by their physiotherapist during their initial consultation at Sydney Physio Clinic to assess if shockwave therapy is an appropriate treatment option for them and their condition. Shockwave therapy may be administered in isolation or in conjunction with other forms of treatment to best assist the recovery of your complaint.
When applying shockwave therapy to an area palpation will be used to locate the desired treatment area either by anatomical location or tenderness on palpation. Depending on the area the skin overlying the area to be treated may be best marked to ensure accurate application. To optimize contact between skin and the applicator, a silicon based gel will be applied to the area and then the hand held probe is applied to the skin delivering the shockwaves in a controlled and focused manner for about 5-10 minutes per injured area.

  • Some patients described the process as sounding and feeling like a “small jackhammer” hitting at the treatment area. A stimulation that may produce some discomfort and depending on the area being treated and the level of pain you are experiencing at the time of treatment, any discomfort caused may resolve immediately or, temporarily persist for the short term typically resolving within 24 hours.

Between treatment sessions patients are able to perform all their normal daily activities as per usual. Generally very few complications have been reported with the use of shockwave therapy, the primary complaint if any being not all patients are cured of their symptoms rather than patients suffering any side effects/complications.

Wondering If Shockwave Therapy May Be Right For Your Chronic Musculoskeletal Conditions?

If you suffer from a longstanding ache or pain, have a reoccurring or unresolved problem and have failed to respond to previous treatment then shockwave therapy may be right for you. If you think shockwave therapy could be of benefit to you then call us at Sydney Physio Clinic a centrally located CBD physio practice and we can discuss any suitability with you and help arrange you a time to come in for an assessment and initial treatment session.

Disclaimer: This information is provided as an educational service and is not intended to serve as medical advice. Anyone seeking specific medical advice or assistance on Shockwave Therapy A New Tool In Chronic Musculoskeletal Conditions should consult his or her general practitioner, physiotherapist, orthopaedic surgeon or otherwise appropriately skilled practitioner.