One of the amazing tools in our pain management toolbox is Shockwave Therapy. It is a non-surgical technique developed for the treatment of localized musculoskeletal pain using an application of a series of high-energy acoustic waves to the treatment area. Shockwave Therapy stimulates metabolism and improves blood circulation to facilitate the healing and regeneration of damaged tissue. Shockwave Therapy can also relieve pain by producing an analgesic (numbing) effect on the treatment area.

Shockwave Therapy is most commonly used for treatment of the following:

  • Calcific Tendinopathy (calcium deposits on tendons)
    • eg. Supraspinatus calcification, biceps tendon calcification, infraspinatus calcification
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Rotator cuff injuries
  • Golfer’s elbow & Tennis elbow
  • Scar tissue removal
  • Chronic muscle tightness/pain
  • Trigger finger

Frequently asked questions:

Q: What is the success rate of Shockwave Therapy?
A: The reported rate of clinical success is between 77 and 80 percent worldwide. Each treatment is cumulative and results are often felt after three or four sessions. You may even feel an improvement in your condition (usually a reduction of pain) after the very first treatment.

Q: Does the treatment hurt?
A: There may be some discomfort during treatment, depending upon the level of pain that the patient is already experiencing in the area. However, since the treatments only last for about five minutes, most patients are able to tolerate this discomfort quite well. Additionally, the intensity of the treatment can be adjusted at the beginning of each session to allow some analgesic effects.

Q: Will there be any pain after the treatment?
A: Most patients will experience an immediate relief of pain following treatment. However, within 2-4 hours after treatment, they may experience some soreness in the treated area. This soreness has been reported as being very tolerable and it may last from a few hours to several days.

Q: What about “physical activity” vs. “rest” following treatment?
A: It is recommended that patient refrain from physical activity, especially, any that would involve the treated region for 48 hours following each treatment session.

Q: How many treatments are needed and how often?
A: Most conditions require three to five sessions. The treatments are done 7-10 days apart, depending upon the patient’s tolerance and their tissue response.