Shockwave Therapy, or Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ECSWT), is a safe and proven treatment which is an excellent minimally-invasive alternative to steroid injections or surgery for a range of persistent or long-term conditions where other treatment options have failed.
Clinically proven, evidence-based results with minimal adverse side effects.
Less invasive than other treatment modalities such as steroid injections or surgery
Benefits felt within weeks and generally no need to take time off work for recovery.
Regenerative effects of treatment address the cause of the problem, not just the pain
Shockwave therapy is clinically proven to be effective in treating a range of problems and has a positive response rate of 60-90% depending on the condition being treated. Also, in contrast to other interventions, such as steroid/cortisone injections, where the effects are often short-lived, longer-term outcomes with shockwave are excellent.
Shockwave therapy is recognised by top orthopaedic hospitals and is also used by many high-profile sporting bodies.
Before considering steroid injections or surgery, speak to us about your suitability for shockwave therapy.
Shockwave therapy is largely risk-free. It is recommended by NICE (the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) for the treatment of a number of musculoskeletal conditions and is widely used within the NHS and private hospitals in the UK.
There are two types of shockwave treatment available. These are commonly known as Radial Shockwave and Focussed Shockwave.
Radial Shockwave is the more common and accessible form of shockwave therapy used by the majority of clinics who offer shockwave therapy. It is highly effective in treating chronic tendinopathies (a weakening of the tendon resulting in pain and instability).
Focussed shockwave is more of a specialised therapy offered by fewer clinics. It is the enhanced form of shockwave therapy and, in addition to treating tendinopathies, Focussed Shockwave is also able to treat bony disorders such as osteoarthritis, shin splints and non-union/stress fractures.
At Chatteris Osteopaths we have both forms of shockwave therapy and are therefore able to combine Radial and Focussed Shockwave therapy in order to maximise the outcomes of the treatment, leading to quicker and more effective results.
Shockwave treatment uses a specialised hand-held device to pass acoustic ‘shockwaves’ through the skin to the affected affected area. These shockwaves not only help to reduce pain but they also have a regenerative effect by stimulating the body’s own healing processes, facilitating the repair and remodelling of the damaged tissue.
Following your initial consultation, a course of shockwave therapy will generally involve a series of four to six treatment sessions at weekly intervals. The number of treatments required will vary according to the type of injury you have, how long you have been suffering with it and which form of shockwave treatment (Radial or Focussed) is advised.
Occasionally a second course of treatment (usually a further two to four sessions) may be required however the vast majority of cases are resolved with single course of treatment.
In order to maximise the outcome of the shockwave treatment it is recommended that a course of shockwave therapy be followed by a 12-week period of guided exercise rehabilitation which consolidates the effects of the shockwave treatment and reduces the chances of any recurrence.
The benefits from shockwave therapy can be felt within weeks (sometimes even days) of starting treatment however the enhanced healing action stimulated by the treatment will continue to work for around 3 months after the treatment finishes.
In contrast to surgical interventions, patients can generally carry on with their lives as normal whilst undergoing a course of shockwave treatment, with few needing to take any time off work.
See below for how shockwave therapy is proving effective in treating a variety of chronic (i.e. long-term) problems and injuries.
If you’re suffering from long-term low back pain this may be being caused by an irritation of the small facet joints in the spine.
This condition can sometimes be referred to as facet joint syndrome, facet joint disease or facet joint arthropathy.
Patients with this condition have often been advised to undergo steroid injections however a course of shockwave therapy may be an effective and less invasive option.
If you’re suffering from long-term hip pain – which may also radiate into the buttock and down the inside and outside of the thigh – then you could be suffering from gluteal tendinopathy.
Gluteal tendinopathy is sometimes referred to as greater trochanteric bursitis or greater trochanteric pain syndrome (GTPS). It can often affect runners and is more common in women due to their greater hip angle.
Shockwave therapy helps to regenerate the gluteal tendon, paving the way to a stronger and more stable hip
Pain suffered in the shoulder is often due to a tendinopathy of the rotator cuff muscles – the deep muscles which help to control and stabilise the shoulder joint.
This condition can sometimes be referred to as sub-acromial bursitis, sub-acromial impingement or shoulder impingement syndrome.
Rotator cuff problems are frequently referred for surgery however our shockwave treatments are helping people regain the use of their shoulder with a much less invasive intervention.
If you’re experiencing pain on the inside or outside of your elbow and down into the forearm this may be due to a tendinopathy of your forearm muscles.
Pain suffered on the outside of the elbow is known as tennis elbow (or Lateral Epicondylitis), whilst pain suffered on the inside of the elbow is known as golfer’s elbow (or medial epicondylitis).
Shockwave therapy accompanied by a slow, heavy, loading exercise programme can help reduce pain in the tendon and return it to health.
If you’re suffering from pain and swelling around the back of your ankle, where the calf muscles attach into the heel then you may have an Achilles tendinopathy.
This swelling is often mistaken for inflammation and therefore wrongly treated with steroid injections, which can lead to a weakening of the tendon.
Shockwave therapy has a regenerative effect, not only helping to reduce pain but also to strengthen the damaged tendon.
Pain in the sole of the foot, particularly into the heel and ‘arch’ regions, is likely to be caused by plantar fasciitis.
This condition is more correctly termed plantar fasciopathy as it effectively a tendinopathy of the plantar fascia muscle on the sole of the foot.
Shockwave therapy kick-starts the healing process enabling the regeneration the plantar fascia and the strengthening of the foot.
Jumper’s knee, or patellar tendinopathy, relates to pain experienced at the front of the knee just below the kneecap.
It is often experienced by those who participate in ‘impact’ sports (involving running and jumping) however it can affect anyone and can be painful when simply kneeling down or going up and down stairs.
A course of shockwave therapy will help reduce your pain and enable you to start loading the knee in order to regain its strength and stability.
Contact us now to book a FREE 15-minute chat with an Osteopath to see if shockwave therapy may be something that would benefit you.
Need help? Call us on 01354 694050 or book online here