Treating Bursitis in a Couple Of Minutes

Published On June 27, 2018 | By Clare Louise | Health

Bursitis affects over 8.7 million people in the United States.[1] Despite this, far too few people know what it is, how it manifests and the impact it has on quality of life. Bursitis is the condition in which the bursa – the fluid sac localized between bones and soft tissues in the body to prevent friction, suffers inflammation and swelling. As a result, people experience high levels of pain and tenderness.  The most common affected areas are the knees, elbows, ankles and shoulders.

This condition can affect anyone at any age and the causes can be many, from performing repetitive movements and actions, putting too much pressure on joints, having a sedentary lifestyle or as a symptom of various diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis or gout.

Radial shockwave therapy is becoming an invaluable option from the care toolbox with a significant number of clinical trial results available to back it up. One study comparing two groups of patients with chronic hip pain syndrome has shown benefits of low-energy shockwave therapy after one, three and 12 months follow-up and substantial improvements in contrast to the group receiving other therapies. Noteworthy are the results pinpointing to the long-term results achieved over time. [2]Take for instance a comparison between administrating one of the current standard of treatment, corticosteroid injections and radial shockwave therapy. Initial results favoured the injections in providing pain relief in participant patients, however over a couple months’ time at final follow-ups, patients reported excellent outcomes. A staggering 68% after four months and an even higher 74% after 15 months. This allowed many to return to their normal lives, go back to practicing sport and avoid recurrence.

How shockwave therapy works and what to expect from your visit

Radial Shockwave Therapy has been practiced since the mid-1980s and it originated in Europe. There is a common misconception around the fact that it is a painful and invasive option with many people even believing it leads to scarring and worsening the situation. This is not the case. A shockwave therapist is a trained professional that has the necessary baggage of information and skills to safely perform the technique, keeping discomfort to a minimum.

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After a therapist carries out an assessment and decides alongside the patient what the goals of the treatment are, a program of therapy sessions, preferably on a weekly basis, is put in place. It is important to stress that a patient is not administered an electrical shock, but physically generated high energy sound waves. This stimulates healing as pressure is transferred through the tissues and reaches the bursa, boosting cell activity between connective nerves and bones.

Other benefits of radial shockwave therapy include the fact that that it acts fast with many patients needing as few as three sessions to start feeling better, it is very low-effort as the patients lay down similar to when receiving a massage and it is timely, lasting as little as five minutes per treatment. The therapy is a lot less painful than say for instance injections, but some patients experience a mild discomfort during the mere minutes the procedure is being performed, yet this does not persist and every patient has the opportunity to have a discussion with their therapist and decide if they can tolerate it or not.




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