Shockwave therapy is a relatively new treatment option used for musculoskeletal conditions. This treatment was initially seen in hospitals for “breaking down” kidney stones that were too large to pass. Now the technology has been modified so that the high pressured acoustic shockwaves travel through the skin to stimulate blood flow to the injured area which speeds up our own healing processes within our body for tissue repair.
What is the mechanism of the treatment?
The radial shockwave treatment works to stimulate the C nerve fibres in the body. These nerves cause a pain sensation. This explains why there will be discomfort during and slightly after the treatment. When the C nerve fibres are stimulated, substance P is also stimulated. Substance P is a neuropeptide. The treatment works to over-stimulate the C nerve fibres so that less substance P is released.
Therefore, there will be less pain sensation after the course of treatments. The shockwave therapy also allows activation of repair to the injured area as well as increased blow flow.
What does it feel like?
Pressure is pushed on the injured area with the probe. The shockwave treatment will feel a little uncomfortable like short bursts of throbbing sensations through the probe.
What conditions is it suitable for?
Commonly used for musculoskeletal conditions, some examples include:
- Heel pain/plantarfasciitis.
- Achilles tendonitis.
- Patella tendonopathy.
- Shin pain/Shin splints.
However the podiatrists will be able to tell you if your problem is suitable for this treatment.
When is this treatment unsuitable?
- If you are pregnant.
- If you have a tendon rupture.
- If you have circulation problems or previous history of blood clots.
The podiatrists will be able to further determine if treatment is unsuitable.
Pain or discomfort during and after treatment.
What are the risks involved?
- Bruising to the skin area after treatment.
- Swelling to the treatment area.
- Unlikely risk of rupturing tendons that are at a pre-rupturing stage.
How can A Step Ahead Help you?
Resolution of pain is most often achieved through a combination of treatments. This may include:
- Assessment of foot and leg mechanics
- Activity modification
- Footwear advice
- Orthotic therapy
- Stretching exercises
A Step Ahead Foot and Ankle care see 1000’s of patients a year with complex heel pain and other painful muscular conditions. Many of whom have been to see other Podiatrist and well meaning Health professional with no success. Please call our helpful team to make an appointment to get you on the road to a pain free tomorrow. Contact us here !