SHOCKWAVE THERAPY (ESWT)
ESWT IS A NEW HEALING TECHNOLOGY THAT ENDS
For the Treatment of:
Benefits of High-Energy Shockwave Therapy:
What Is ESWT Used For?
How Does Extracorporeal Shockwave Treatment Work?
The widely accepted theory is that Extracorporeal Shockwave Treatment (ESWT) causes micro-trauma and controlled injury at the affected area, thereby leading to the formation of blood vessels (revascularization) which triggers the body’s natural healing process and repair mechanisms. Studies have shown a 60-80% success rate in significantly reducing or eliminating pain.
What Happens Before, During and After ESWT Treatment?
BEFORE: Patients will be instructed to discontinue medication containing aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (e.g. Motrin) for several days before treatment (and most likely for up to 30 days following treatment) unless otherwise instructed by the treating doctor. Patients will be asked to stop eating and drinking a number of hours prior to treatment due to the use of anesthesia.
DURING: Treatment typically lasts 20 to 30 minutes and is performed on an outpatient basis in a surgical center. To avoid discomfort during treatment, most doctors administer a local anesthetic at the point of pain and perform the procedure with the patient under intravenous (conscious) sedation.
AFTER: Patients may experience discomfort in the treated area after the effects of anesthesia have subsided. Some bruising, swelling, and temporary numbness is normal and expected. In the immediate days following treatment, many doctors will recommend RICE – Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation. Weekly follow-up visits with your doctor allow the physiotherapy needed for optional healing.
For four weeks following treatment, patients are advised to not participate in stressful activities (e.g. jogging, heavy housework, yard work, participating in sports) involving the affected area. Patients can then typically resume normal activity. Heel pain patients are typically instructed to avoid flat shoes such as sandals and slippers; continued use of orthotics may be encouraged.
Healing is generally complete at about twelve weeks, although patients may continue to experience additional reduction in pain thereafter.
What are Alternative Treatments?
Most doctors will first pursue conservative treatment options to reduce or eliminate pain. Conservative treatment may include such measures as rest, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), steroid injections, over-the-counter pain relievers, physical therapy, and orthotics (for heel pain). Chiropractors will usually recommend ice, physiotherapy, exercises, and orthotics (heel lifts) prior to considering more aggressive approaches. However, when conservative treatments have failed, ESWT is increasingly being used to avoid traditional invasive surgery.
Is This Treatment Right for Everyone?
You should speak to your doctor or call Dr. Richard K. Skala if you're not currently seeing one, about your specific needs to see if Extracorporeal Shockwave Treatment is right for you. ESWT is not recommended for use on pregnant women, children, anyone with a pacemaker, or anyone on anti-coagulant therapy or who has a history of bleeding problems.
How Do You Get Treatment?
Talk to your doctor or call Dr. Richard K. Skala if you're not currently seeing one, about your specific medical condition to see if Extracorporeal Shockwave Treatment (ESWT) is right for you.
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