For athletes and those suffering from tendon pain, finding an effective remedy is paramount. At the heart of revolutionary treatments lies shockwave therapy, a trusted solution especially for conditions like Achilles tendinopathy. At Pure Life Physiotherapy & Health Centre in Surrey, we’re committed to understanding the intricacies of treatments like shockwave therapy and how it benefits tendon health. In this piece, let’s explore why it’s quickly becoming the go-to solution for many.
A Glimpse into Tendon Health
Tendon health is multi-faceted. When these critical components of our musculoskeletal system face issues, the results can range from minor discomfort to severe pain, impacting our daily activities and overall well-being.
Using the case of Achilles tendinopathy, it’s clear to see how quickly tendons can deteriorate with excessive strain. Picture a novice runner. Initially, they embark on 5km runs weekly. Suddenly, they surge to 40km within a week, placing significant strain on the Achilles tendon. This rush in activity can shift a perfectly healthy tendon to a state known as “reactive tendinopathy.”
The Path of Recovery or Degeneration
Now, imagine two possible futures for this runner:
- They heed the warning signs, lessen the stress on their tendons, and undertake appropriate rehabilitation. The result? Their tendon gradually returns to its normal state, following a recovery trajectory we’ll denote as the “green arrow.”
- They ignore the pain, pushing their limits continuously. The Achilles tendon deteriorates further, moving from “reactive tendinopathy” to “tendon disrepair”, and if still neglected, a worrisome state of “degenerative tendinopathy.”
While the trajectory might seem straightforward, pain perception adds complexity. Interestingly, not all painful tendons show damage through ultrasound scans. In certain cases, individuals experience heightened pain even when the tendon damage appears minimal.
Unravelling the Benefits of Shockwave Therapy
So, where does shockwave therapy fit into this narrative? And why is it hailed as a vital tool in tendon rehabilitation?
Blood Vessel Formation and Cellular Activity
One of the primary benefits of shockwave therapy lies in its ability to promote new blood vessel growth in tendons. This heightened blood circulation optimizes cell function, particularly tenocytes, enhancing the synthesis of collagen — the key structural protein in tendons.
Pain Management and Rehabilitation
Another commendable aspect of shockwave therapy is its ability to diminish pain. By reducing the concentration of Substance P, a compound associated with pain, patients find greater comfort and reduced discomfort post-shockwave therapy. Such a decrease in pain allows patients to engage in their rehabilitation exercises more comfortably, especially within the 48-hour window after a session.
Pairing shockwave therapy with a structured exercise regimen often yields the best outcomes. As tendons respond favourably to rehabilitation exercises, the dual approach of shockwave and exercise has been scientifically shown to provide optimal clinical results.
At Pure Life Physiotherapy & Health Centre in Surrey, we believe in empowering our clients with knowledge. Understanding the mechanics and benefits of treatments, especially something as impactful as shockwave therapy, can be transformative. If you’re on the quest for enhanced tendon health and efficient recovery, consider delving into the world of shockwave therapy with us.