Jon’s Top 5 Shockwave Treatments and Lecturing at Liverpool FC
What Is Shockwave Therapy?
It was with great pleasure I was invited up to the home of Liverpool FC this weekend to teach a number of health professionals about the benefits and uses of shockwave therapy.
Liverpool FC and many other premiership football clubs have recently invested in shockwave therapy due to the great results seen getting players back from injury quicker than ever before.
So for this blog post, I thought it would be useful to explain how shockwave therapy works and my Top 5 treatments.
What is a Shockwave?
Shockwaves are high-powered sound waves that can transfer energy from outside the body to inside the body. The big advantage of shockwaves is that they can pass through the body without breaking the skin (unlike an injection). Shockwaves are very powerful and can be used by doctors to break down kidney stones. The latest shockwave device (as used at Skelian) uses well-controlled energy levels to stimulate the healing of injuries.
How does it work?
Shockwave therapy works through vibrating the internal cells of injured tissues to stimulate a healing response. When a tissue is stimulated with shockwaves a number of reactions occur:
- The cells are stimulated to repair and replicate which is particularly useful for conditions such as tendinitis.
- There is a large increase in blood flow to the area, improving healing rates of tissues.
- Bone cells increase in number, therefore, improving the strength and speed of bone healing.
- Pain decreases significantly through the reduction of painful nerve fibres within injured body regions.
Top 5 Treatments:
Plantar Fasciitis – shockwave therapy has fast become the gold standard for treating heel pain. Research has shown over 80% success rates when used in combination with a good stretching routine. This condition can persist for years without treatment and it is not uncommon for patients to return to activities after just 3 x sessions of Shockwave.
Achilles Tendinitis – The Achilles tendon commonly becomes painful in runners and football players (see previous blog post). The Achilles often becomes swollen and inflamed limiting running and walking. Shockwave can help reduce Achilles inflammation and swelling in as little as 3-6 sessions. In combination with exercise, I cannot remember the last Achilles tendinitis that did not respond to shockwave, with success rates above 80%.
Frozen Shoulders – one of the most underused treatments for frozen shoulders is shockwave therapy. A frozen shoulder typically lasts 12-18 months if not treated. When a frozen shoulder sets in the movements of the shoulder become very limited. I have used shockwave therapy on hundreds of frozen shoulders with amazing results. Most people see results within just 1 month of starting treatment.
Trochanteric Bursitis – the most common cause of hip pain is when the gluteal muscles become inflamed as they join the bone at the side of the hip. This often causes significant pain lying at night and difficulty walking. Many people undergo steroid injections for this, however, the pain often comes back. With shockwave therapy it has been shown there are no return of symptoms meaning you can cure the problem rather than mask pain. Again with just 3 treatments and some strengthening exercises most cases resolve within 8 weeks.
Knee Ligament Pain – I treat many footballers and one of the common injuries I see is a ligament sprain to the inside of the knee. This normally occurs after a tackle or twisting during a game. It is surprising how long these ligaments can stay painful for and remain with small tears. One of the most successful treatments for this is to use shockwave therapy to reduce the pain of the ligament and promote healing of the ligament. Most players are noticing near full recovery after just 3 weeks.
Above is just a snapshot of some of the most successful shockwave treatments I perform every day. Considering no drugs are required, there are virtually no side effects and it is non-invasive it is definite Shockwave therapy is here to stay with more professional sports clubs (Saracens rugby) using it daily.
If you have any of the problems discussed above or feel shockwave therapy may be useful to you then please give us a call to discuss.