Word is spreading about the latest medical phenomena, Focused Shock Wave, for the non-invasive treatment of sports injuries, but what is the truth about this treatment and how does it work? We sat down with Sean Vieira, the President of Austin’s Sonex Orthopedics, and asked some probing questions.
AFM: How did you get involved with Focused Shock Wave?
Vieira: Well, as a former collegiate gymnast, and after 20 years of military service; I had developed a few chronic injuries. I was suffering from severe patellar tendinopathy, or jumper’s knee. Conservative treatments had failed and surgery was next, but I was not too happy about the risks and rehab. I stumbled upon Focused Shock Wave, had the treatment and was amazed with the results. Here I am years later, no surgery and still pain free.
AFM: Can you briefly explain what Focused Shock Wave Therapy actually is?
Vieira: Its formal name is Focused Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy. We use high-energy acoustic waves from outside the body to treat numerous chronic musculoskeletal injuries. The treatment takes about 30 minutes and only one is needed. It is the same technology that urologists use to break kidney stones, except we are typically breaking scar tissue or calcifications and stimulating natural healing.
AFM: Staying fit and active is important to our readers, what kind of injuries do you treat?
Vieira: Common injuries include plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinopathy, jumper’s knee, tennis elbow, shoulder tendinopathy and numerous other chronic overuse injuries. Focused Shock Wave Therapy also works great for nonunion bone fractures and recent studies have shown it to be effective for arthritis.
AFM: What are the advantages of Focused shock wave?
Vieira: First and foremost, it works. Focused Shock Wave has over 20 years of research and hundreds of studies to back it up. Most of our patients have suffered months or years with pain and are tired of trying other treatments, yet do not want surgery. Patients also like that we are non-invasive, FDA approved and require no opioids afterwards. And of course, no downtime; patients can return to work and routine activities the next day. They just need to avoid high-impact activities for about 30 days.
AFM: It sounds like this gets folks active again quickly, is it just masking the pain rather than treating the injury?
Vieira: No, while patients do get immediate pain relief, we actually heal the injury; well, technically we are stimulating the patient’s body to heal the injury itself. The shock waves are focused onto the injury using an ultrasound guidance system. They break apart scar tissue and calcifications, increase vascular growth that increases blood flow and stimulate the cells to begin healing; including the recruitment of stem cells and growth factors to the area.
AFM: How is it different from Radial Shockwave?
Vieira: Unfortunately, the term shock wave is not regulated. Radial Shock Wave uses a much lower energy pressure wave, requires six to eight treatments, and is considered a physical therapy device. Although Radial is not FDA approved, it is a legitimate physical therapy device for mild or acute injuries. It is not considered an alternative to surgery like Focused Shock Wave. Sonx is the only provider of true high-energy Focused Shock Wave in Texas.
AFM: What are the key points our readers should keep in mind?
Vieira: If conservative treatments have failed and you would like to avoid surgery, consider Focused Shock Wave. It simply works, providing long-term healing that gets you active again after a single, 30-minute treatment. You should speak to your doctor about it or contact Sonx and we will link you up with a doctor already in our network. We want to help you get rid of that pain and get back to life.
To learn more visit www.SonexOrtho.com
Questions? Reach Sonex by phone at 512-646-1500 or email at info@SonexOrtho.com