What is Shockwave Therapy?
Originally developed for kidney stone treatment, shockwave therapy has evolved into a non-surgical approach for musculoskeletal conditions. By using acoustic waves, this therapy stimulates healing and provides relief for acute and chronic pain. It has gained popularity among sports medicine and pain management specialists.
How Does Shockwave Therapy Work?
During the treatment, an acoustic wave is directed to the affected area, penetrating the skin and targeting muscles, tendons, or joints. The therapy can be customized with low or high energy shock waves, depending on the injury. A handheld device connected to a machine delivers the shockwaves while the therapist applies gentle pressure. Ultrasound gel helps transmit the waves and break down scar tissue.
Benefits of Shockwave Therapy:Back pain can have a significant impact on your active lifestyle. Instead of relying on conventional treatments like medication or surgery, consider the less invasive option of shockwave therapy at VanCity Physio.
Shockwave therapy offers numerous benefits for pain relief, including:
- Dispelling "Substance P": Shockwaves eliminate the neurotransmitter "Substance P," known for causing persistent pain.
- Dissolving Calcified Fibroblasts: The therapy breaks up calcification that cause micro-tears and tendon pain.
- Releasing Trigger Points: Acoustic shockwaves provide relief for back, neck, and shoulder pain by releasing trigger points.
- Reversing Chronic Inflammation: Increased mast cells resulting from shockwave therapy reduce chronic inflammation and promote healing.
- Stimulating Collagen Production: Collagen production is vital for repairing skeletal damage and ligaments. Shockwaves accelerate collagen production and strengthen new tendon fibers.
Why Choose Shockwave Therapy?
Shockwave therapy is a convenient option for those with a busy West Coast lifestyle. With quick sessions and shorter recovery times compared to invasive procedures, it offers long-lasting results. It can complement other treatments like personalized rehabilitation plans or serve as an
alternative to surgery or prescription pain medication. Moreover, shockwave therapy is an affordable option.
Frequency of Shockwave Therapy Treatment:
Most patients require multiple sessions for lasting relief. While immediate relief may be experienced after the first session, it is usually temporary. Typically, at least three sessions are needed, spaced three to ten days apart. The frequency depends on individual response and tolerance to therapy.
Ideal Candidates for Shockwave Therapy:
While shockwave therapy is generally safe and effective, certain individuals should avoid it if they have blood clotting or nerve disorders, recent steroid injections, recent use of anti-inflammatory medication, pregnancy, bone cancer, infections, or metal plates in the affected area. A comprehensive medical history and examination are necessary to determine suitability for shockwave therapy.
During and After Treatment:
Shockwave therapy is a straightforward procedure. The therapist locates the treatment area through palpation and applies ultrasound gel. Using a shockwave applicator, pressure is applied to the area, allowing the shockwaves to radiate throughout. The treatment lasts approximately five to ten minutes.
Discomfort during the therapy is minimal and well-tolerated. The intensity can be adjusted as needed. Loose clothing is recommended for comfort, as different positions may be required. Immediate pain relief is common, and any post-treatment soreness usually subsides quickly. Physical activity should be avoided for a couple of days. Temporary redness, swelling, or inflammation at the treatment site is normal and resolves within a day or two.
Schedule a Consultation Today:
Regain control of your life by addressing your back and neck pain. Contact VanCity Physio at our downtown St. Paul's Hospital or West Broadway Kitsilano location to explore shockwave therapy. Our experienced pain management Physiotherapists will assess your needs and develop a personalized treatment plan. Call (604) 398-5584 or book online to take the first step towards effective pain management.