Extra corporeal shockwave therapy, otherwise known as shockwave is becoming a very popular treatment option for many musculoskeletal conditions.

Shockwave is an effective, non-invasive treatment for painful chronic conditions. It is particularly beneficial for people who want to avoid surgery and have failed other treatments!

Jannali Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic is one of the very few businesses in the Sutherland Shire that own a state-of-the-art shockwave machine.

What is it?

Shockwaves are acoustic, high energy sound waves that are delivered to injured tissues. We often describe it as an electric hammer. It contains a little bullet that pulsates up and down at various speeds.

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How does it help?

There are theories that shockwave treatment works by:

  • Forming new blood vessels which helps the repair process
  • Stimulation of collagen production, which is necessary for the repair
  • process of damaged structures
  • Dissolution of calcified areas
  • Reversal of chronic inflammation
  • Helps to mediate pain


  • Plantar Fasciitis +- heel spurs
  • Patella tendinopathy
  • Achilles tendinopathy
  • Hamstring tendinopathy
  • Chronic tendinopathy
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Shoulder tendinopathy +-calcification
  • Calcifications
  • Shin splints (medial tibial stress syndrome)
  • Lateral Hip pain (greater trochanteric pain syndrome)
  • Gluteal tendinopathy
  • Muscle recovery

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What does the research suggest?

  • 92% of people report moderate to high satisfaction following shockwave treatment for plantar fasciitis
  • 80% of people with proximal hamstring tendinopathy report satisfactory recovery
  • Eccentric loading (i.e – slow lowering heel raises off step) + shockwave treatment is more effective than just eccentric loading alone in people with mid-portion and insertional achilles tendinopathy. It is important to note that current evidence also mostly advocates for progressive strengthening and load management in this population.
  • Shockwave use for Tennis elbow showed no added benefits
  • A reduction in shoulder pain and increase in function among people with calcific shoulder tendinitis. Shockwave also helps re-absorption of calcium deposits in this group. Elimination of calcifications in 84% of shoulder tendonitis cases

Take home point

You can see that there is moderate to high evidence for some conditions, and conflicting evidence for others. One thing that is clear, is that Shockwave is a safe, non-invasive option, that can be helpful, particularly if you are trying to avoid more invasive procedures such as cortisone injections or surgery. Keep in mind that that EVERY treatment whether you are using shockwave or not should incorporate a good exercise program.