Knee OA, often referred to as “wear-and-tear arthritis,” is a common condition that affects 365 million people worldwide. Characterized by pain, reduced mobility, and impaired quality of life, knee OA can significantly impact daily activities and overall well-being. Factors such as age, weight, joint stress, and repetitive movements, in particular, make knee osteoarthritis risky and worse if not treated.
Traditional Approaches and Their Limitations
Knee osteoarthritis occurs due to cartilage breakdown in the knee joint, causing bones to rub against each other. As this cartilage wears away, bones may come into contact, resulting in pain, stiffness, and weakened joint function. Common treatments include pain medications, physical therapy, and surgery. However, these might provide temporary relief and not address the root causes. Surgery may not suit everyone’s needs or preferences. However, therapeutic approaches like radial shockwave therapy (r-ESWT) are gaining attention for their potential to transform the lives of knee OA patients.
Research and Evidence
Radial Shockwave Therapy (r-ESWT) is the most common type of shockwave therapy that delivers radial waves all over the local area. It utilizes acoustic waves to stimulate healing in injured or painful areas of the body. The shockwaves trigger increased blood flow, cell regeneration, and the release of growth factors, promoting tissue repair and reducing inflammation for patients suffering from OA.
A recent study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health examined the effects of radial shockwave therapy in knee OA patients. The study compared the outcomes of r-ESWT with another type of shockwave therapy and found that both approaches were effective in alleviating pain, improving physical function, increasing knee range of motion (ROM), and enhancing the 6-minute walk test distance. Notably, r-ESWT demonstrated greater pain reduction and functional improvements compared to alternative therapy.
Benefits of Radial Shockwave Therapy
Radial waves are good at providing relief over a wider area and can treat injuries related to musculoskeletal conditions. One of the notable advantages of radial shockwave therapy is its non-invasive nature. Unlike surgical interventions, it does not require incisions or extensive recovery periods, making it an attractive option for those seeking a minimally disruptive treatment.
Safety and Considerations
Current data suggests that radial shockwave therapy is safe for knee OA patients. This therapy offers a ray of hope for individuals seeking effective, non-invasive relief from the burdens of knee OA. With its ability to alleviate pain, enhance function, and improve quality of life, radial shockwave therapy can significantly impact the journey from injury to recovery. Knee osteoarthritis may start as an injury, but it doesn’t have to define the impact on one’s life.
Upgrade Your Patient’s Outcomes
Shockwave Canada helps healthcare professionals provide better outcomes for their patients. That’s because we are the exclusive distributor of Storz medical devices, the leader in shockwave therapy technology. We offer 24/7 support, ensuring that you have a reliable partner throughout your medical journey.