Plantar Fascia & Achilles Tendon Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy

Mr. O’Flaherty is delighted to have facilitated the delivery and installation of a brand new EMS Swiss Dolorclast Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy Machine. Fully funded by the MITRE Trust in Musgrave Park Hospital, the new machine offers another modality of treatment for those patients suffering from severe Achilles and Plantar Fascia pain. He carries out treatment in his NHS foot and ankle clinic in Musgrave Park.

Mr. O’Flaherty explains:

Patients with Plantar Fasciitis (fasciopathy) and Achilles tendinopathy have often spent a long time exhausting conservative methods of treating their problems before they finally come to see a Foot and Ankle Surgeon. Colleagues in physiotherapy have tried stretching programs whilst patients have often been to their podiatrist or orthotist who will have made orthotics (in-soles) for them. Approximately eighty percent of patients will respond very well to these and completely resolve. However, for a small percentage of patients, the condition can become chronic in nature and very limiting. They can have difficulty with day to day mobilisation, never mind the sports and hobbies that they wish to return to participating in.

It is these patients that benefit from a careful assessment by the multidisciplinary team, including my consultant radiologist colleagues and physios. After determining a patient’s suitability for the treatment, patients are given three sessions of shockwave therapy in succession. They continue their stretches and return to be assessed two months later. Approximately 70-80% of these difficult cases to treat can expect a good improvement in their symptoms.

Further information about the shockwave machine can be found here:

http://www.ems-company.com/en/medical/products/swiss-dolorclast/swiss-dolorclast-master

Current NICE guidelines for the use of Shockwave Therapy in Plantar Fasciitis can be found here:

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ipg311

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