Blog Post by Osteopath Shaun Coghlan – Principle Four Osteopathy

Shockwave Therapy Chattanooga

Recently Principle Four osteopaths Heath, Shaun and Jarrod attended the Chattanooga Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy course. This involved further training in the theory and clinical application of Shockwave Therapy, in order to continue demonstrating competency and safe practice in administering this treatment.

Radial Pressure Shockwave Therapy is an excellent non-invasive treatment method used to treat many conditions that are normally very difficult to manage. The shockwave is generated by a projectile in the handpiece producing kinetic energy. This energy translates along the transmitter into a form of sound energy known as an acoustic shockwave. The acoustic wave is then transmitted into the affected tissue via a coupling gel.

Shockwave Therapy Plantarfascia

Therapeutic shockwaves were initially introduced as a medical treatment for eliminating kidney stones over 20 years ago. One of the side effects discovered while using this treatment was the accelerated tissue healing results on the areas submitted to the shockwave treatment. Today Radial Pressure Shockwaves have been successful in treating many conditions such as:

  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Achilles Tendinopathy
  • Tennis Elbow or Golfers Elbow
  • Hamstring Tendinopathy
  • Greater Trochanteric Pain Syndrome (hip)
  • Shoulder Calcific Tendinopathy
  • Myofascial Trigger Points
  • Adhesive Capsulitis/Frozen Shoulder

So how does it work? Well the local treatment of the affected area will enhance and reset the healing pattern. Today there are several working hypotheses for the physical effects of radial pressure waves:

  1. Pain Reduction – the patient experiences a reduction of pain, explained by the Gate Control Theory. Intensive pulses from the shockwave transmitter into the tissue inhibit the transmission of the pain signals.
  2. Increased Metabolism – shockwaves influence the tissue on a cellular level. The cells are affected by stimulating the release of factors that promote the healing process.
  3. Remodelling – it has been shown that shockwaves assist in the release of substances that have an important role in breaking down and remodelling the damaged tissue. 
  4. Revascularisation – repeated shockwaves to the affected area creates a revascularisation effect, with the new blood flow in the area promoting tissue healing and regeneration.
  5. Reduced Muscle Tone – the strong pathological association between pain and muscle tone will be broken and thus lead to restoring a normalised muscular tone.

It is important to note, that in many conditions, Radial Pressure Shockwave Therapy alone will not create a long-term resolution and it is critical to combine this therapy with a detailed concise rehabilitation program.

The osteopaths at Principle Four Osteopathy are thoroughly trained in the prescription and administration of Radial Pressure Shockwave Therapy. So, if you wish to learn more about shockwave therapy and how it might be able to assist with your injury recovery then book in with one of our osteopaths today. Book online here.

Blog post written by Shaun Coghlan (osteopath). Click here to read more about Shaun.

Shaun Coghlan P4O