Shock wave therapy

ESWT - extracorporeal shockwave therapy is a therapeutic procedure which uses pneumatic source of mechanical shockwaves which are transmitted with a special probe to the painful area. The positive effects of this therapy are stimulation of cell metabolism, degradation of calcium crystals and soft tissue and reduction of pain sensitivity.

By changing the cell environment, endorphin release is stimulated which blocks painful stimuli and the pain receptors do not transmit signals anymore. The change of chronic to acute inflammation occurs and that way self-healing mechanisms are activated. Shockwave therapy is a non-invasive solution for chronic pain in the shoulders, back, elbows, knees or heels. It is applied in sports medicine, orthopedics and physiotherapy. Shockwave therapy is in fact a stimulation for the processes of healing to begin and to continue in the body a few weeks after treatment.

In St. Catherine Specialty Hospital, we use SWISS DOLORCLAST machine and successfully treat the following indications:

  • Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis)
  • Golfer's elbow (medial epicondylitis)
  • Jumper's knee (patellar tendonitis)
  • Shin splints (Medial tibial stress syndrome) (
  • Calcaneal spur (calcar calcanei)
  • Calcific tendinitis (tendinitis calcarea)
  • Achilles' heel inflammation
  • Myofascial pain syndrome (trigger point therapy)

In the research done worldwide, the effectiveness of shockwave therapy has been proven in 77 to 80% of treated patients. On average, it takes 3 to 5 and maximum of seven treatments in the period of 7 to 10 days after individual treatments. During the treatment, the patient can feel different sensations, from tingling, mild discomfort or pain. The treatment lasts around 10 minutes. In the first 24 to 48 hours after therapy, the intensification of the pain can occur and then the pain reduces. Some patients feel relaxation immediately after therapy but most of them after a few days. It is advisable for the patients not to do great physical activity, especially of the treated area, 48 hours after therapy.

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