Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy works for many treatable medical conditions as a non-invasive solution for treating and healing pain, and is steadily increasing in use in the United States. And for a variety of good reasons.
Chronic pain as a result of injury or illness is one of the most difficult conditions for so many people to live with on a daily basis. It affects every aspect of a person’s day-to-day life and is also incredibly taxing on mental health and wellbeing.
Data from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) estimates that more than 20 percent of adults in the United States struggle with chronic pain.
All too often, people think their only option is to take pain medication, undergo a costly, and sometimes traumatic surgical procedure, or just grin and bear the pain as they try to get on with their daily duties and responsibilities.
There is, however, another nonsurgical way to treat pain and also avoid having to take potentially addictive prescription pain medications.
What is Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy?
Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT), sometimes referred to as EPAT Therapy or simply “Shockwave,” is a non-invasive therapy used to treat pain and promote healing by delivering high-energy sound waves to injured or damaged tissue during short treatment sessions.
Through the use of targeted ESWT therapy, inflamed tissue that causes pain will begin to regenerate because of increased blood circulation created by the treatments. Many patients see an improvement in their pain levels after as few as one or two sessions of ESWT.
Treatment with ESWT is beneficial for patients because there is no down time after the procedure, so time missing work, school or sports practice is not an issue for patients.
“Extracorporeal” means outside the body, and unlike surgery, Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy is completely noninvasive.
This form of nonsurgical procedure is ideal for patients who have tried more conservative options, such as resting, icing the effected areas, or decreasing activity levels, but have not seen any improvement in their pain levels or progress made with respect to their injuries healing.
What Conditions Can Be Treated With an Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy Machine?
Regardless of the cause, dull or aching pain, pain that travels up and down the leg, into the lower back, or pain in the wrists and elbows can significantly diminish a person’s quality of life.
Some people may experience intermittent pain, such as discomfort that comes and goes, while others deal with constant pain. Acute pain is often severe and comes on quickly from an injury, whereas chronic pain is more constant and longer-lasting.
Shockwave therapy machines can be used to treat many different types of soft tissue injuries all over the body, including those that are caused by acute or chronic pain.
ESWT is Commonly Used for the Following Treatable Conditions:
- Heel pain (Plantar Fasciitis)
- Foot pain
- Ankle pain
- Knee pain
- Hamstring pain
- Back pain
- Shoulder pain (frozen shoulder)
- Elbow pain
- Wrist pain
- Hand pain
- Neck pain
- TMJ (jaw pain)
- Sports injuries
What Are the Benefits of ESWT?
There are many benefits of ESWT for treating pain. Because Shockwave Therapy is nonsurgical and noninvasive, patients undergoing treatments do not have to suffer the groggy side effects of anesthesia or worry about infection or scarring.
The treatments are also cost effective because there’s no lengthy recovery time or hospital stays.
Depending on the treatable conditions, studies show that ESWT Shockwave treatments deliver a 91 percent success rate, and more than 80 percent of patients report satisfaction with a faster and easier healing process.
- Faster, easier healing
- No anesthesia required
- No risk of infection
- No downtime
- No scarring
- Cost effective
With the efficiency and success of shock wave treatments, a growing number of medical disciplines and specialties, like orthopedists, podiatrists, chiropractors, sports medicine practitioners, physical therapists and pain management clinics, are now offering their patients Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy.