Shockwave therapy a treatment device that was first introduced into clinical practice back in 1980 as a treatment for breaking up kidney stones. Since then it has now commonly been used as a method for musculoskeletal disorders and to stimulate the growth of bone. Shock waves are high energy sound waves produced under water using a high voltage explosion. In musculoskeletal conditions they are used to induce new blood vessel formation and to stimulate the release of growth factors such as eNOS (endothelial nitric oxide synthase), VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) and PCNA (proliferating cell antinuclear antigen). Subsequently this leads to the improvement of the blood supply and to an increase in cell proliferation which helps healing. A recent episode of the podiatry livestream, PodChatLive was spent talking about shock wave therapy for podiatrists.
In that episode of PodChatLive they talked with Consultant Physiotherapist, academic and researcher Dylan Morrissey about how good the evidence base for shockwave therapy is and how robust the methodology that is often employed within such research. Dylan also talked about what foot and ankle pathologies shockwave is indicated for and commonly used for and whether there are any key contraindications or risks associated with shockwave’s use. Dr Dylan Morrissey is a physiotherapist with over 25 years’ experience of working in sports and exercise medicine. He completed his MSc at University College London in the UK in 1998 and a PhD in 2005 at King’s College London. He is now an NIHR/HEE consultant physiotherapist and clinical reader in sports and musculoskeletal physiotherapy at Bart’s and the London NHS trust / BL School of Medicine and Dentistry, QMUL. He has gained more than £5m in research funding and has and has authored over 60 peer-reviewed full papers. His main research interests are shockwave and tendinopathy, evidence translation and the link between movement and pathology.