Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy for Plantar Fasciitis, Pittsburgh

ESWT, Extracorporeal ShockWave Therapy, Shockwave therapy or lithotripsy, was originally developed by Dornier MedTech to break up kidney stones in the body. The therapy was approved by the FDA in the early 1980s and today is the standard treatment of choice for urinary stones. Because it’s delivered outside the body (extracorporeally), many of the risks associated with surgery are eliminated. In fact in ESWT or orthotripsy, the shock waves actually stimulate the body’s own repair mechanisms.

About the Treatment

The 1/2 hour visit starts with the area of pain being identified by the patient and usually confirmed with ultrasound imaging. That affected area is then lightly numbed and the patient is asked to sit on a exam table or chair. After a gel is applied to the foot and therapy head, the head’s water-filled cushion is placed against the foot. Shock waves are released from the device as Dr. Christina positions the foot. Shock wave therapy relieves pain and provides a short recovery period, with very few risks or side effects. Most patients are able to resume normal activity the next day.

What is extracorporeal shock wave therapy and how does it work?

Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy, also referred to as ESWT, is a nonsurgical method that delivers high-energy acoustic (sound) waves to a targeted area in order to to treat various musculoskeletal conditions, including plantar fasciitis. ESWT works in 3 ways:
  1. Desensitization. Local anesthesia is administered prior to the procedure. However, the ESWT is a very powerful machine, and the targeted area will become increasingly desensitized throughout the procedure.
  2. It changes a chronic injury into an acute injury. Chronic injuries occur from overuse of an area of the body over an extended period of time. Plantar fasciitis is an example of chronic injury.
  3. Vascularization. During the ESWT procedure, microscopic and controlled injuries are induced. These injuries “jump start” the overall healing process by promoting the growth of new blood vessels in the achilles tendon (vascularization), and giving your body the tools that it needs to heal itself naturally.

Benefits of ESWT vs. Surgery

ESWT is a non-invasive procedure requiring only local anesthesia to the targeted treatment area.

  • Surgery is an invasive procedure where you will need to be placed completely under general anesthesia.

ESWT has little to no downtime, other than not participating in overly strenuous activities for 2-8 weeks following the procedure.

  • Following plantar fasciitis surgery, patients will be required to wear a protective boot and/or use crutches. The healing time following surgery is a minimum of 3 weeks +.

Physical therapy is not needed following the ESWT for plantar fasciitis

  • Several months of physical therapy is often required and needed following surgical correction.

While ESWT is not covered by most insurance companies, it is cost effective.

  • Surgical procedures can be very expensive, especially if a patient has a high deductible or poor health care coverage.
ESWT New York City

High Intensity Shockwave Machine, Pittsburgh PA

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar Fasciitis (often referred to as a “heel spur”) is a common cause of heel pain and affects about 2.5 million people each year in the U.S. Historically, surgery was the only alternative when conservative treatments like ice, orthotics, physical therapy, medication and cortisone failed. Today, with Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT), that pain can be relieved with a gentle 18 minute treatment done right in the podiatrist’s office. image of ESWT plantar fasciitis treatment New York City

ESWT to treat Plantar Fasciitis

The muscle that stretches along the bottom of the foot (the plantar fascia) is responsible for maintaining the arch of your foot. This is the muscle that becomes inflamed or irritated.

What causes plantar fasciitis?

  • Common sports injuries
  • Overweight people (stand or walk frequently)
  • Flat or high-arched feet
  • Improper shoes
  • Frequent running on sand
  • Increasing age


Frequently Asked Questions

What is causing my heel pain in New York City?

Plantar fasciitis, affecting around 10% of people, is one of the most common causes of heel pain in New York City. Several factors contribute to a person developing plantar fasciitis. Overuse is the main cause. Overusing the tendon by repeatedly overstretching causes tiny, microscopic tears in the tendon. These microscopic tears lead to inflammation in the plantar fascia, hence appropriately named plantar fasciitis (-itis means inflammation). Other factors include obesity, age and foot mechanics (such as having flat feet or high arches).

image of heel spur syndrome New York

Picture of Plantar Fasciitis

How can I tell if my heel pain in Baltimore is from plantar fasciitis?

Several symptoms distinguish plantar fasciitis from other foot injuries or ailments. Common symptoms of plantar fasciitis in Baltimore include:

  • Shooting or stabbing pain in the heel or arch of the foot
  • Pain that is often worse with your first few steps in the morning or after long periods of inactivity
  • Pain following exercise, not typically during exercise

If you suspect that you have plantar fasciitis in Baltimore, you can call 724-991-0116 for assistance in locating a podiatrist office in your area.

Why is my heel pain worse in the morning?

Plantar fasciitis is often the most painful in the morning because the plantar fascia, the tendon that runs along the bottom of your foot, contracts and tightens when it is not being used. When you step out of bed in the morning, the tightened tendon is overstretched. This overstretching causes microtears in the tendon, in turn causing inflammation and the pain that you are experiencing.

What should I try before ESWT in Long Island?

You should try and fail 3 conservative treatments including ice, stretching, cortisone injections, night splint, rest and physical therapy. If this doesn’t work, then ESWT in Long Island is an excellent safe and effective alternative to plantar fascia surgery.

I saw an advertisement for ESWT in Pittsburgh and am wondering, what is the effectiveness of ESWT for plantar fasciitis?

In the experience of Pittsburgh podiatrists performing ESWT, there is an 88% success rate after 3 months following ESWT for plantar fasciitis. It is very unlikely that you would need to have a 2nd procedure done. Please take into account that ESWT in Pittsburgh is not a “cure all” and should not be used as the only means of healing. ESWT will give your body the tools it needs to effectively heal. However, you must help the healing process by continuing to stretch daily, icing in the evenings (after 3 months), and wearing supportive orthotics in your shoes.

Mobile ESWT heel spur treatment new jersey

ESWT FDA approved Protocol

Plantar fasciitis New york

Image of heel pain treatment ESWT

At Sound Medical, we follow the precise FDA protocol and guidelines to treat Plantar Fasciitis and heel pain.

Many patients have suffered for years and have Heel Spur Syndrome in Philadelphia, to Pittsburgh that has impacted their life to the extent that they can not enjoy their everyday lives and activities. Sound Medical has the answer to heel pain in New York. ESWT can help with one 20 minute treatment!

Sound Medical Technologies, Inc. offers several ESWT– related services. We provide trained staff and certified technicians to operate the equipment during ESWT procedures. Physician certifications, recommendations, and our clinical applications specialist can answer all your questions.

Call Sound Medical Technologies to learn how you can have this technology available on a case-by-case basis, without purchase or lease. We deliver and set up the machine and provide you with educational materials for patients. You provide the procedure. You maintain control of the patient relationship. You receive the reimbursement into your practice.

Have questions or would like to schedule SMT to come to your office?

Contact us at 724.991.0116 or Email Us