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Treat Tennis Elbow and Other Chronic Conditions with Shockwave Therapy

If you suffer from chronic plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendonitis, tennis elbow, shoulder tendonitis or another chronic tendinopathy, you may be a good candidate for Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT) at our Boca Raton facility. A non-surgical procedure, ESWT is used internationally for conditions all over the body. A similar shockwave therapy procedure called lithotripsy is often used to break up and disperse kidney stones. Shockwave therapy is especially useful for this type of treatment, as it has been known to increase bone density and promote new tissue growth.

A recent FDA study conducted in the United States revealed that patients who suffered from chronic plantar fasciitis (with or without the presence of a heel spur) saw an average reduction in pain of 92% with only one shockwave therapy treatment. Because this method of treatment is non-invasive, patients can be treated extracorporeally (outside of the body) while also avoiding the risks and high costs associated with surgery.

If You Think You Could Benefit From This Method of Treatment, Here Are the Answers to Some of Our Most Frequently Asked Questions About Shockwave Therapy

Q. How does ESWT work?

A. ESWT is one of the few medical technologies that performs best on patients suffering from chronic conditions that didn’t respond to a more conservative method of traditional therapy. ESWT accelerates the body’s natural healing process in a number of ways, including:

  • Through a process called cavitation, ESWT stimulates fibroblast and tenocyte production. Fibroblast or tenocyte cells make up your body’s connective tissues, including tendons and the fascia.
  • ESWT diminishes pain by over-stimulating the nerves that send pain sensations to your brain.
  • The procedure can break down pathological calcification deposits (also known as a spur). Depending upon your condition, this may or may not be the goal, but an interesting by-product. In all cases, ESWT is targeted at the condition that caused the spur, and not the spur itself.
Q. What sort of recovery can I expect after ESWT?

A. Because ESWT forces your body to create new tissue cells in the damaged area, you should expect gradual healing to take place over days, weeks or months. While not typical, some patients have reported mild soreness and even bruising after treatment, while others don’t experience any pain at all. Most patients should have noticeable improvements by the 13th week. In approximately 20% of our patients, an additional round of treatments after 16 weeks may be necessary.

Remember, as it likely took time for you to sustain an injury, it also takes time for healing. Total healing of the area can take up to one year. However, the best thing about ESWT is that, unlike surgery, you avoid getting worse before getting better. You won’t need a lengthy amount of time off work or painful post-procedure recovery time.

shockwave therapy
Q. What conditions are treated by ESWT?

A. ESWT is used to effectively treat a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions, including complaints involving attachment points for tendons and ligaments in major joints, such as the plantar fascia, Achilles tendon, shoulder, elbow or knee. Contact us to discuss the specifics of your condition.

Q. How effective is ESWT?

A. A recent FDA study showed an overwhelming success rate with ESWT treatments. In the study, a group of 150 patients was asked to rate their pain level on a scale of 1 to 10. The average pain level reported before treatment was 7.7. After receiving one ESWT treatment, the patients were asked one year later to rate their pain level again on a scale of 1-10 and this time the average pain score was around 0.6. This is a 92% reduction in pain and a much higher rate of success than just about any other non-surgical or surgical procedure. More importantly, ESWT has proven to be a very safe method of treatment.

Q. What’s involved in the ESWT procedure?

A. During your treatment, you’ll be asked to lie back comfortably with the area to be treated exposed. Since it’s a non-invasive procedure, no lengthy recovery period is required after the treatment. Using an instrument to target the damaged location, you’ll hear repetitive clicking sounds during the treatment. Our technician will do their best to ensure your comfort during the procedure, as it’s a priority to us. If you’re ever nervous or anxious about treatment, talk to your doctor or treatment coordinator. Our goal is to always make sure you’re comfortable and relaxed during treatment!

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