The shockwave treatment (ESWT - Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy) is a new non-invasive and extremely effective therapy, which is used for the treatment of musculotendinous disorders, i.e. degenerative and calcinating alterations in the tendons and muscles. The ESWT method is based on the delivery of high-energy shock waves (acoustic waves) able to propagate in the subcutaneous tissues. In this way, controlled micro-lesions in the painful or inflamed area are caused which therefore influence the accelerated healing of the damaged, inflamed and painful structures of the body.
Treatment is commonly used in the following cases:
- calcific tendinopathy of the rotator cuff (shoulder joint, scapulo-humeral)
- inflammation and degenerative changes of the Achilles' tendon
- inflammation of the patella or quadriceps ligament
- pain in the calcaneal spine (plantar fasciitis)
- inflammation of the tendons in the elbow (epicondylitis)
- trochanteric bursitis
Five treatments are usually required for optimal success. Usually we use the therapy with the frequency from 10 to 20 Hz, and during one therapy approx. 1500 to 3000 shock waves are emitted in the body. We adapt the strength of the waves to each individual respecting his pain threshold. The number and intensity of the waves also depend on the diagnosis and the area to be treated.
Shockwave treatment is usually prescribed by an orthopedic specialist, traumatologist or physiotherapist based on X-ray, ultrasound (US), MRI-magnetic resonance, based on clinical examination. Before treatment can also be marked an area where treatment is performed. The therapy is performed once a week and is carried out in combination with other methods (manual therapy, cryotherapy, and/or TECAR, LASER). Pain reduction occurs after the third treatment, while treatment success is estimated three months after the end of treatment.
However, treatment is considered contraindicated for women during pregnancy, for patients in a post-operative phase, or in the presence of wounds, as well as for patients taking blood-clotting drugs.