Shockwave: Harnessing the healing power of sound waves

Non-Surgical Treatment for Healing Chronic Muscular and Joint Pain, Scar Tissue, and Calcifications

Extra-corporeal Radial Shockwave Therapy (ESWT), often referred to as “sound wave”, is a non-surgical, non-drug treatment that uses sound waves to improve blood flow and stimulate the body’s natural ability to heal. It has been used successfully for orthopedic pain since the 1990s.

Musculoskeletal conditions treated with shockwave

  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Muscle pain
  • Joint pain
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Tennis elbow
  • Trigger points

How Shockwave Works

Shockwave is a non-surgical, out-patient procedure which may delay or eliminate the need for surgery. This therapy acts by stimulating the body’s natural healing process in a controlled fashion. Benefits may vary depending on your individual diagnosis and healing response.

Benefits of Shockwave Treatments:


ESWT stimulates the body’s inflammatory response to an area. By increasing the metabolic activity at the target tissue, healing processes are accelerated.This is useful in promoting remodeling of dysfunctional collagenous tissues such as trigger points, muscle strains, tendinopathies, and other conditions causing chronic pain.


Breaks down scar tissue and calcifications.


Nociception inhibition leads to a decrease in the transmission of pain by nerves.

Shockwave effectiveness:

Studies show success rates to be over 80-90% improvement. Based on the available evidence, the goal is to have at least 75% reduction in pain within 3 months. Worldwide, success rates are around 80 to 90%. You can review the research on shockwave at

Common Questions on Shockwave Treatments

What Should I Expect During Treatment:

Your doctor’s assessment of your condition often takes longer than the actual treatment. Treatment itself lasts between 5 to 20 minutes. No anesthetic is needed, but you may experience some discomfort. Most people can easily tolerate the procedure, but the shockwave intensity can be adjustmented to decrease the pressure that you feel.

Number of Treatments Needed:

Usually three to five treatments are needed, each separated by one week. If a condition is chronic, two or more treatments may be added. If you do not respond to treatment as your doctor expects, your progress will be reviewed and an appropriate referral may be made.

What To Expect After Treatment:
  • Discomfort and local redness may be experienced 2-4 hours after the treatment. 
  • Some cases discomfort can last up to 48 hours. 
  • Rarely pain lasts up to 5 days. 
  • Some bruising and swelling can occur.

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