Shockwave Therapy

A new treatment is now available!

Richmond Physiotherapy is delighted to offer Shockwave therapy,
a non-invasive treatment that will enhance and reset the healing pattern in stubborn conditions that are slow to repair.

3-6 sessions is sufficient as a course of treatment, often combined with
a structured loading/strengthening programme of exercises.

What is it?

Therapeutic shockwaves were introduced as a medical treatment for eliminating kidney stones without causing skin injury, over 20 years ago.

Coincidentally, bone healing and accelerated tissue healing were discovered as side effects in the adjacent areas submitted to the shockwaves.

That happy coincidence prompted decades of research into how shockwave therapy can be helpful in conditions where tissue repair is slow or stubborn.

What is it good for?

These conditions are great candidates for shock wave therapy especially if you’ve tried other treatments and nothing has helped:

  • Achilles tendinopathy
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Tennis/golfers elbow
  • Shoulder tendinopathy
  • Hamstring tendinopathies
  • Gluteal tendinopathies

How does it work?

Shockwaves are generated with a precision ballistic mechanism which accelerates a projectile by compressed air. This produces kinetic energy which is then translated into sound energy in the transmitter to form an acoustic wave. The acoustic waves, transmitted to the injured tissues via a coupling gel, stimulate blood flow and metabolic activity within cells.
Hence tissue repair.

What does it do?

There are several working hypotheses for the physical effects of radial pressure waves:

    • Shockwaves create increased cell membrane permeability which allows old, damaged and weakened cells to be removed and replaced with healthy viable cells.
    • Shockwaves produce a counter irritation at the dorsal root ganglion decreasing the pain signal and closing the theoretical pain gate.
    • Increased blood circulation leads to an increase in the oxygen content and a reduction in carbon dioxide in the tissues which may stimulate the healing process.

Does it hurt?

Your physiotherapist will discuss the treatment with you and there is no risk of it hurting when you commence.

Patients usually say they can feel a pulsing against the skin during treatment.

Remember the condition you’re bringing is probably hurting already. Patients tend to report some soreness a few days after the session but nothing unbearable and after all, what you’re looking for is tissue repair in a condition that is stubbornly not healing.

Where’s the evidence?

Shockwave therapy research has been going on for decades and
it is clinically proven and recognised by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). You can read an in-depth assessment here

Here’s what one of our patients had to say about Shockwave Therapy:

The shockwave treatment I received helped with my recovery from plantar fasciitis very fast. I had an acute pain and I was barely able to walk, let alone run. Being a runner and also a big fan of working out, not being able to exercise is a big negative hit on my life. I started with a few regular physio sessions and loading exercises and there was an improvement, but the pain was still there. After 3 shockwave therapy sessions, the pain seems to totally vanish like a miracle. It was a rapid recovery and I could go back to my exercises and slowly to running again. I am happy I tried this new kind of therapy as shockwave seemed to make a big difference for my plantar fascia problem.

How can I find out more?

Feel free to give us a call on 020 8332 1132 and speak to one of our clinicians about whether Shockwave Therapy is right for you.

Lawton Gate House,
7 Hill Street, Richmond,
London, TW9 1SX

020 8332 1132