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ShockWave Therapy

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ShockWave Therapy

We are currently the only private podiatry and physiotherapy clinic in Northern Ireland offering EMS Swiss DolorClast, Shockwave Therapy.

Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT) is the name given to a treatment which involves shockwaves being passed through the skin to the injured part of the body. ESWT has been approved by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) in the UK and has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the USA. Previously ESWT was used with varying degrees of success. This was because the shockwaves lost energy as they made contact with the skin. This is where the Swiss DolorClast method is unique. 100% of the shockwave power generated by the EMS master machine will travel through your injured cells.

How does the treatment work?

Passing radial shockwaves through the surface of the skin with the Swiss DolorClast initiates an inflammation-like response in the injured tissue that is being treated. This prompts the body to respond naturally by increasing blood circulation, the number of blood vessels and therefore metabolism in the injured tissue. This accelerates the body’s natural healing process by increasing cell generation.

What are the benefits?

  • No need for surgery or medication
  • Treatment sessions last for an average of only 15 minutes
  • No hospital admission
  • Transient analgesic effect after treatment
  • No lengthy rehabilitation, loss of mobility or time away from work
  • Minimal complications
  • Strong clinical results

What conditions can be treated?

In the foot / ankle, NICE have recognised the use of shockwave therapy for:

  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Insertional Achilles tendonopathy / posterior heel spur
  • Achilles tendonopathy

However, it has also been successfully used for shin pain (shin splints / medial tibial stress syndrome) and there is  evidence for its use on stress fractures. Please visit our page on physiotherapy for information on its uses on the upper body.

How successful is the treatment?

Clinical trials, conducted by some of the world’s leading medical professionals, have shown the Swiss DolorClast to be successful in treating the conditions recognised by NICE.

However, as with all treatments, this is not a fix all for every patient. Our experience suggests that it tends to work better in patients who have implemented the common / standard treatments for the condition and then use this treatment to effectively kick start the healing process.

How do I book treatment?

You will need a new patient consultation to confirm the diagnosis, and be assessed for your suitability for the treatment and any appropriate investigations. A course of treatment, generally once per week for three weeks is required.  Please contact the clinic for more information or if you are intending to use your medical insurance cover to fund treatment.

The Research

Plantar Fasciitis

Gerdesmeyer L, Frey C, Vester J, et al.
Radial extracorporeal shock wave therapy is safe and effective in the treatment of chronic recalcitrant plantar fasciitis: results of a confirmatory randomized placebo-controlled multicenter study. Am J Sports Med 2008;36:2100-2109

Ibrahim M, Donatelli R, Schmitz C, et al.
Successful treatment of chronic plantar fasciitis with two sessions of radial extracorporeal shock wave therapy. Foot & Ankle Int. 2010 May; 31 (5):391-97 20460065

 Achilles tendonitis

Rompe JD, Nafe B, Furia JP, Maffulli N
Eccentric loading, shock-wave treatment, or a wait-and-see policy for tendinopathy of the main body of tendo Achillis: a randomized controlled trial. Am J Sports Med 2007;35:374-383

Rompe JD, Furia JP, Maffulli N
Eccentric loading, compared with shock wave treatment for chronic insertional Achilles tendinopathy: A randomized controlled trial. J Bone Joint Surg Am 2008;90:52-61

Rompe JD, Furia JP, Maffulli N
Eccentric loading, versus eccentric loading plus shock-wave treatment for midportion Achilles tendinopathy: A randomized controlled trial. J Bone Joint Surg Am 2009;37:463-470



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Best podiatrist in Belfast, professional service and amazing customer care. Handy location and affordable. Over the past year I have had a number of procedures here and they have always been quick, painless and stress free. There’s a personal touch to the service and communication is always easy. I can’t recommend Head2Toe enough, whether you need orthotics, nail surgery or struggle with knee, hip or lower back pain they can help. – Gavin Finn, Belfast