We appreciate that you may have a number of questions if you’re considering shockwave therapy. It’s an investment both in time and finances. However, if you’re suffering with a long standing, stubborn injury that’s stopping you doing the things you enjoy, it can be a really effective treatment option.
Here we answer some of the most common questions we get asked about Shockwave therapy. Please feel free to give us a call or contact us if you’d like to find out more or have any specific questions. You can also request a free Shockwave 101, packed full of information here.
Shockwave is a great treatment to consider if you:
Have a long term, stubborn injury or condition that is slow to recover or hasn’t responded to other treatments.
Want to get back to the sports or hobbies you enjoy faster, free of your injury.
Want to avoid unnecessary steroid injections or surgery.
Have Plantar Fasciitis, Achilles Tendonopathy, tennis elbow or trochanteric (hip) pain, as it is specifically recommended by the NICE guidelines for the treatment of these conditions, although there are many others it helps too.
Who would benefit from Shockwave treatment?
Is the treatment painful?
You will definitely feel the treatment. Some people experience pain but this is tolerable. Following the treatment, you may experience redness, bruising, swelling and numbness to the area. But this will improve within a few days and these are all normal reactions to the treatment.
How many sessions will I need?
The research backed protocols outline that most conditions will require 3-6 sessions of shockwave therapy. Additional sessions may be required if the condition is very long standing.
You will get most benefit if the sessions are spaced out weekly.
What happens during a treatment session?
Initially you will have a thorough assessment by one of our Physiotherapists to ascertain if Shockwave Therapy is the most appropriate treatment for your injury. Our unique approach means that we will combine Shockwave with other appropriate treatments to make sure you make a full recovery.
During a Shockwave treatment, your Physiotherapist will find the location of the pain by searching for painful points. Some gel is applied to the skin, which improves the contact between the skin and the hand piece, to allow the shockwaves to penetrate the body properly.
The Shockwave therapy machine is used to deliver a series of acoustic wave pulsations directly to the site of your injury. The treatment itself can be a little painful, although this is tolerable.
The actual treatment time spent receiving the shockwave therapy is typically less than fifteen minutes. However, your treatment sessions will also include education, advice and an appropriate post treatment plan from our experienced Clinicians to further support your recovery.
Are there any side effects to be aware of?
You need to be aware that there are some potential side effects of Shockwave. You may experience:
Pain & discomfort - This can occur during or after treatment & usually subsides within 1-2 days.
Transient skin reddening and/or bruising at the treatment site.
Transient minor skin irritation or damage at the treatment site.
Temporary numbness in the area.
These are all normal reactions that indicate your natural healing process has been stimulated.
Shockwave therapy can also be known as:
Radial shock-wave therapy
Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ECSWT/ESWT).