What is Shockwave Therapy

What is Shockwave Therapy

Electro hydraulic Shockwaves have been used in medicine for over 40 years. The original Shockwave Lithotripsy device was developed for disintegrating kidney stones by a German Company called Dornier Medical in 1980. The original Lithotripsy machine called the Dornier HM3 was an investment of about $2.5 million. Lithotripsy devices use focused sound waves to pinpoint and disintegrate kidney stones. Lithotripsy is extra corporeal, meaning outside the body. This amazing technology was a major game changer for people suffering from kidney stones. For the first time people did not have to endure an invasive surgical procedure to be relieved of the intense pain and discomfort of kidney stones. Lithotripsy has proven to be very safe over the last 40 years and remains the gold standard for eliminating kidney stones with a dramatically lower incidence of side effects than invasive surgery.

 

The next frontier for the use of electro hydraulic shockwaves came in 1988 when a trauma surgeon in Austria set out to prove that Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy was not a useful therapy for healing nonunion bone fractures. To his surprise he proved the opposite, that indeed ESWT was very effective in healing bones. He also found that the procedure created healing of the tissue around the non healing bone fracture. Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy is widely used in Europe today for non union bone fractures, and supported by the governments in Germany and Austria as a first line treatment before invasive surgery and the placement of plates and screws inside the body. The FDA is reviewing ESWT for treating non union bone fractures in the United States.

 

At the beginning of the 1990s smaller Shockwave devices were developed and the term Low intensity Shockwave therapy was born. These devices were lower energy, about 1 tenth the power of a Lithotripsy machine and could allow treatments without anesthesia. Initially, Low intensity Shockwave therapy was used for orthopedic related injuries such as tendinopathy’s, plantar fasciitis , achilles tendinitis , sprains and muscle pulls in athletes, chronic pain, etc. The technology continues to evolve and is being used to help people suffering from Neuropathy, Rotator cuff injuries, Tennis and Golfers elbow and many other Painful conditions.

 

LiSW is also starting to make a presents in solving the difficult problem of diabetic foot ulcers and burn wounds. Wounds care represents a market that is over 10 billion annually in the United States. LiSW will offer hope and resolve to those suffering from these challenges.

 

Plantar fasciitis is difficult and painful problem that occurs very frequently as we age especially for those people who spend a lot of time on their feet – like surgeons, athletes and factory workers. There has been a lot of clinical work done to study the effectiveness of Low intensity Shockwave Therapy to treat plantar fasciitis. The outcomes have been very positive and in the most recent study published in the Journal of Foot and Ankle surgery, LiSW treatments achieved patient satisfaction in over 80% of the patients treated. Low intensity shockwave therapy is usually Involves six 10 to 15 minute procedures. Patients typically feel uncomfortable during the 10 minute treatments due to the tough and fibrous facia in the bottom of the foot. The treatments are tolerable without any needles or medication and each treatment brings you closer to healing the tough connective facia between your heel & toes.

 

Low intensity Shockwave has been used in Sexual Medicine as well for over 10 years in the United States and around the world. True low intensity Shockwaves improve blood flow and create angiogenesis or the development of new blood vessels, heal scarring and disintegrate plaque buildup in the blood vessels. LISW has helped tens of thousands of men regain their confidence and improve their sexual performance without the need for medication.

 

Shockwave technology is gaining a tremendous amount of interest for healing and true low intensity Shockwave Therapy will be an important tool for physicians for many years to come. With growth comes duplication and the development of inferior technologies. Buyer beware! It is very important for consumers to do their research and evaluate not only the caregivers offering treatment but the device they intend to use.

 

The market is flooded with a technology called Radial sound waves. These sound waves are superficial and can only achieve very shallow penetration into the tissue. The depth of penetration for a typical radial device is about 6 to 8 mm. Radial devices are generally sold for $18,000 – $20,000 while the Softwave Technology for sexual health is being sold for $120,000 – $150,000. There is a significant difference in the performance and effectiveness of these devices. Softwave is a patented technology that took the classic Electro hydraulic Shockwave and made it unfocused. The benefit to the Unfocused design is a much larger treatment zone than a focused device. A larger treatment zone allows you to cover a larger surface area in significantly less time and pulses. Softwave is a patented technology and produces unfocused Shockwaves that penetrate 182 mm. Softwave has the largest treatment zone of any shockwave device on the market. These things are very important when it comes to comparing outcomes and getting the results you want. Softwave has been used for a number of urological treatments including erectile dysfunction, Peyronie’s disease chronic prostatitis and pelvic pain. The research continues and additional uses in Urology are on the horizon.

 

Do your research not all technologies are the same. Softwave technology can easily be shown superior to all other devices. We would be glad to explain those differences to help you make a life changing decision.



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