What is Shockwave Therapy?
Shockwave therapy is a non-surgical procedure that uses high energy waves to treat chronic or acute pain and promote regeneration of the bones, tendons and other soft tissues. By focusing acoustic waves on an affected area of the body, tissue repair and cell growth can be sped up which can reduce pain and also restore mobility and reduce further sensitivity. Shockwave therapy is used in a number of different medical disciplines such as sports medicine, orthopaedics and physiotherapy. Many physiotherapists, trainers and other medical professionals endorse shockwave therapy due to its ability to accelerate recovery time and reduce both chronic and acute pain.
How Does Shockwave Therapy Work?
The application of shockwave therapy to a designated area of the body that is causing pain or has recently suffered an injury is a very simple and non-invasive procedure. The shockwave is applied to the tissue or bone by a registered physiotherapist or another medical professional using a device that generates a high energy, acoustic wave generated by compressed air. The kinetic energy of the wave is transferred into the tissue which begins to stimulate the regenerative process at a cellular level. The wave itself is a high amplitude sound wave that is transferred through the skin and other tissue to the affected area without the need for any surgery or anesthesia. The number and frequency of shockwave procedures varies from patient to patient based on the severity of the pain or injury.
There are many specific ways in which shockwave therapy has proven its effectiveness at treating acute and chronic pain. In the past, this procedure was viewed as mostly ineffective, but today further studies and improvements to the procedure have led to the opposite conclusion. For instance, recent studies have shown that shockwave therapy can directly promote the formation of new blood vessels in damaged tissues. This helps improve the blood flow to the affected area, which is necessary to maintain the body’s natural healing process. The acoustic waves used in shockwave therapy have also been proven to have a positive effect on the healing process of bones and tendons, since the waves are able to create what are known as capillary microruptures which increase the flow of blood and nutrients to the damaged area. In addition to these positive effects, there are a number of other ways that shockwave therapy can help reduce pain and improve regeneration such as addressing chronic inflammation, stimulating the natural production of collagen and reducing the buildup of calcium causing joint pain and immobility.
For more information on how shockwave therapy can help you, contact Vancouver’s physio experts at Van Sports & Physiotherapy. Whether you’re a competitive athlete or are just in need of pain relief, we have the right treatment to help you get back to the top of your game.