Shockwave Therapy is now available from ASK Physio, Stevenage

We are excited to offer innovative Shockwave Therapy at our physiotherapy clinic. It’s a relatively new treatment for helping to alleviate chronic tendon and soft tissue pain which hasn’t responded to any other therapy. If you have a condition such as Plantar Fasciitis, Tennis Elbow, or pain in your Achilles tendon or shoulder – talk to our physio team, about Shockwave Therapy.

What is Shockwave Therapy?

The full name of this treatment is: Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy – or ESWT.
It involves very specific targeting of the area of your body where you are experiencing chronic pain. We use a machine to apply tiny pressure pulses to the specific area requiring treatment. This kick-starts your body’s natural healing process. By breaking down injured tissue, your body’s own healing process is accelerated.
Shockwave Therapy is a relatively new treatment. Please be reassured that it is recommended in the NICE guidelines (National Institute for Clinical Excellence) for a number of specific conditions including plantar fasciitis. We are happy to provide further details if you would like to know more.

What are the benefits of Shockwave Therapy?

Shockwave treatmentShockwave Therapy is a great way of tackling chronic tendon pain which other traditional physiotherapy treatments have not been able to alleviate. It should only be considered once other physiotherapy has failed to resolve the problem. This usually involves a minimum of three months of strengthening exercises. There are some cases where we will start shockwave sooner, i.e. if you have been referred by another Physiotherapist and you have had a good attempt at strengthening with them. Shockwave is not a ‘quick fix’ treatment and requires patience and commitment to rehabilitation. The effects are often not felt until weeks after finishing a course of treatment, as the process is regenerative. Your Physiotherapist will explain this further to you when you attend for an appointment.
Pain relief is achieved without surgery, injections or drugs. It’s great for alleviating pain from long term conditions. Many people have found Shockwave Therapy for plantar fasciitis (or plantar fasciopathy) to be extremely beneficial, for example. Conditions which usually respond well to Shockwave Treatment include:

  • Plantar Fasciitis (or Fasciopathy)
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Achilles tendon pain*
  • Gluteus Tendonitis*
  • Hip Tendonitis*
  • Shoulder Tendonitis* (especially Calcific Tendonitis)
  • *Commonly referred to as tendinopathy

What is tendinopathy?

It was previously thought that most tendon problems were caused by inflammation, hence the word tendonitis, meaning inflammation of the tendon. More up to date scientific research has demonstrated that the problem is often one of delayed healing. The terminology now more commonly used is tendinopathy. Often the body’s natural healing process has become dormant or ‘stuck in a rut’. Managing tendinopathy can be slow and frustrating, and in some cases lead to injection therapy or even surgery. ESWT offers a non-invasive way of treating tendinopathy by kick starting the body’s natural healing process.

What to expect during Shockwave Treatment

The aspect that most patients first notice about Shockwave Therapy is the noise! You may also feel some discomfort and your physiotherapist can adjust the level of treatment accordingly. Shockwave Treatment usually lasts for 3 – 4 minutes … it’s quick yet very effective!
Scientific research shows that the majority of people benefit from five sessions of shockwave treatment. This is why we offer a package of five treatments. There is little or no benefit of having any more than five sessions in the vast majority of cases. Each of these treatments should ideally be no more than seven days apart. Afterwards, you may experience a mild ache in the area of treatment and may notice some brief inflammation.

Please note that during the time you have the course of Shockwave treatment, you will be required to rest from heavy loading of the area. For example, if you are a runner, we would allow you to run after 48 hours of having the treatment, but you should keep your runs shorter, slower and generally as easier runs.

The aspect that most patients first notice about Shockwave Therapy is the noise! You may also feel some discomfort and your physiotherapist can adjust the level of treatment accordingly. Shockwave Treatment usually lasts for 3 – 4 minutes … it’s quick yet very effective!

Is Shockwave Therapy for everyone?

It is essential to receive a full assessment prior to starting Shockwave Therapy. Then, our physiotherapists will know whether ESWT is suitable for you.
Usually, you will have received other traditional physiotherapy treatment before booking Shockwave Therapy. This would usually involve flexibility and strength training, or loading the tendon with specific exercises. There are some occasions when ESWT can be used prior to this being tried first, but this will be at the discretion of your physiotherapist and following a full discussion with you.

Is Shockwave Therapy for YOU?

To find out if Shockwave Therapy is the right treatment for you, talk to the ASK Physio team. If you currently receive treatment from us, your physio will be able to advise you. If you are new to our clinic we are happy to arrange an assessment for you. Please contact us to arrange your appointment or ask any questions.

Can I claim for shockwave therapy on my private medical insurance?

Shockwave Therapy is covered by all the major private medical insurance companies including Aviva, AXA, Bupa, Cigna, WPA. We also have very competitive rates for self-paying individuals.

Don’t just take our word for it….

Having suffered with heel pain on and off for several years, shockwave therapy was suggested to me. I was a little apprehensive but pleasantly surprised that not only did the treatment not hurt, but I also experienced instant pain relief. Several weeks later after just 3 treatments, I am still pain free. I would thoroughly recommend shockwave therapy to anyone considering it. It was worth every penny, and I wish I had known about it sooner”. 
Mrs A Twigg, 51.