What does shockwave therapy do for plantar fasciitis?

Shockwave therapy, also known as extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT), is a non-invasive treatment that has been used in various fields of medicine, including orthopedics, urology, and cardiology. For plantar fasciitis, a condition characterized by inflammation of the band of tissue (the plantar fascia) that extends from the heel to the toes, shockwave therapy can offer significant benefits.

The therapy uses sound waves to stimulate healing within the affected area. The procedure involves delivering sound waves, or “shocks”, to the plantar fascia to induce a process known as neovascularization, which involves the formation of new blood vessels. This can enhance blood flow and bring more nutrients to the affected area, which can facilitate the healing process.

Here are the key effects and potential benefits of shockwave therapy for plantar fasciitis:

  1. Pain Reduction: The shockwaves can help to overstimulate the nerves that send pain signals, thereby reducing pain sensation.
  2. Inflammation Reduction: By promoting improved blood circulation, the therapy can help reduce inflammation, which is a key component of plantar fasciitis.
  3. Healing: The shockwaves can stimulate the body’s natural healing processes, including the formation of new blood vessels and the release of growth factors. This can aid in the repair of damaged plantar fascia tissues.
  4. Non-invasive and Safe: ESWT is a non-invasive procedure with minimal side effects, making it a suitable treatment option for many patients.


While many studies have shown positive outcomes with shockwave therapy for plantar fasciitis, it’s important to note that the therapy may not work for everyone. The effectiveness can depend on several factors, including the severity and duration of the condition, the specific protocol used (such as the intensity and frequency of the shockwaves), and the individual’s overall health status. Always consult with a healthcare provider to determine the best treatment approach for plantar fasciitis or any other medical condition.

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