This information is intended for general information only and should not be considered as medical advice on the part of Health-Tourism.com. Any decision on medical treatments, after-care or recovery should be done solely upon proper consultation and advice of a qualified physician.
What is ESWT?
Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT) is a type of therapy that originated in Germany in the early 90s. It has been found to be an effective remedy for soft tissue injuries. The treatment is non-invasive and there is no breaching of the skin. It uses high-energy mechanical energy in the form of shock waves, which are focused on a particular area. The treatment is most commonly used to treat plantar fasciitis.
Soft tissues of the musculoskeletal structure care prone to injury. For some, it can lead to excruciating pain that can render them immobile. The causes of this may be due to intensive use or putting pressure on them for a long period. A diagnosis will usually involve a physical examination by the doctor.
The diagnosis will also involve checking a patient’s medical history and his or her daily routine. The doctor may also request for a short history of the patient’s daily activities. However, in rare cases, the doctor may order a CT scan or an MRI scan. The imaging of the musculoskeletal structure will be used to determine when treatment will begin. This is usually done to ensure there are no tears in the soft tissues. When it is established the tissues are just bruised, ESWT is administered.
How Treatment Works
The treatment will involve two sessions on an outpatient basis that are a week apart. A session will involve about two thousand shock waves directed at the injured tissue. This is usually followed by a sensation that feels like a tapping on the skin. Patients who are coming for an ESWT session should avoid heavy meals. In addition, it is essential that one put on clothing that ensures easy access to the injured area.
The treat works firstly by stimulating nerves in the injured area. As a result, these nerves become overstimulated and less sensitive to pain. This will ensure that the patient is able to lead their life normally without having to wince at the slightest touch. The shockwaves also stimulate the development of blood capillaries. These capillaries supply nutrients to the injured tissues. As a result, this leads to faster healing times.
In most cases, this type of treatment has been found to be more effective than corticosteroids in reducing inflammation. For one, conventional medication seems to become less effective with time. However, the effective of ESWT are incremental; the more sessions one attends the more effective the treatment is.
Recovery : With ESWT, patients could see their recovery drop by as much as half. Typically, in extreme injuries, patients should take about three to six months to recover. This is quite fast considering that some soft tissue injuries can be lifelong problems; in some instances, they progress over time to become worse. The treatment should be followed up with physical therapy. Additionally, patients with this type of treatment should consume a healthy diet. The body needs the right nutrition in order to conduct the repair effectively. After the injury is healed, it would be a good idea to avoid putting too much pressure on it.
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