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Focused Shockwave Therapy Can Be Used to Treat Erectile Dysfunction and Pelvic Pain.
Are you experiencing issues such as erectile dysfunction or chronic pelvic pain syndrome? Then Focused Shockwave Therapy – better known as Low Intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (LiESWT) – could be the best treatment option for you. We use the ‘Storz Duolith Ultra’ LiESWT machine here at SPC, which is the gold standard in Shockwave technology.
What is Focused Shockwave Therapy?
Focused Shockwave Therapy, or Low Intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (LiESWT), is a safe and effective therapy which involves low-frequency sound waves applied to a target area (for example your penis or perineum) via an electromagnetic hand piece with a built-in water buffer. The sensation of Li-ESWT feels like the flicking of an elastic band, and the intensity can be modulated by your physiotherapist to keep it comfortable for you.
How does Shockwave Therapy Work?
The applicator releases focused energy into the tissue which creates a cascade of biochemical changes such as:
- Increased blood flow
- Nitric oxide release (principal neurotransmitter mediating erections)
- Formulation of new blood vessels and promotion of growth factors
- An anti-inflammatory effect
Research shows that Low Intensity Focused Shockwave (Li-FSW) therapy is effective in improving erectile function and erectile hardness in men with vascular driven ED.
Li-FSW also has level 1b evidence (good evidence that is supported by lots of research!) for the management of Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome (CPPS) – as per the European Association of Urology guidelines – as it has been shown to improve pain and quality of life in men with CPPS.
At Sydney Pelvic Clinic we use Li-FSW as part of an integrated management plan addressing the different contributors to your pain and/or sexual dysfunction. We believe in adding the right treatment at the right time for the right patient.
Book in for your initial consultation with your pelvic physiotherapist to find out if focused shockwave therapy is right for you.
WHAT CONDITIONS CAN SHOCKWAVE THERAPY HELP WITH?
Erectile dysfunction is the inability to get and/or maintain an erection sufficient for sexual play. Erectile dysfunction is seen in up to 50% of men over the age of 40, but commonly occurs in younger men as well. Studies have shown that LiESWT can improve erection hardness and quality of life in men with vascular-driven erectile dysfunction. If you are unsure if you are an appropriate candidate, your physiotherapist will assess your suitability for LiESWT during your initial consultation. Our pelvic health physiotherapist are highly trained and able to ensure a high standard of professionalism throughout, with a dignified process that will put you at ease.
Chronic Pelvic Pain
CPPS is the occurrence of pelvic pain in the bladder, bowel, or genitals, in the absence of infection and other pathology. CPPS affects 10% of men in Australia. Low Intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy has level 1b evidence in improving pain and quality of life for men with CPPS. During your initial consultation, your pelvic health physiotherapist will determine your suitability for LiESWT, and there are a range of adjunctive therapies at SPC to treat pelvic pain.
Low Intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy can be used to treat a huge range of musculoskeletal conditions. It is non-invasive and it can reduce pain while helping inflammation. It can also be used to promote tissue regeneration. LiESWT has been applied to orthopaedic conditions and it is great for helping fractures and wound healing. It can also be used to treat upper and lower limb tendinopathies.
For people with scar tissue, Low Intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy is also a viable treatment option. LiESWT has been shown to reduce the calcium deposit diameter in rotator cuff tendinopathy, as well as reduce the thickness of the plantar fascia in plantar fasciitis. There is some emerging evidence that it can reduce the size of penile plaques in Peyronies disease as well.
If you have any questions about our treatment, then you can find the answers below.
The amount of treatments you need will vary depending on the indication of your challenge and the tissue response you have. The effects of Focused Shockwave Therapy tend to be cumulative, and this means that you could well need between 3 and 5 treatments in order to see the best results. That being said, it is very normal to see a huge level of relief after one treatment alone.
There may be a very slight feeling of discomfort when you undergo the treatment. This, of course, depends on the pain of the patient. If you are already experiencing pain in that area then this may lead to additional pain being experienced. The treatment only lasts around 5-15 minutes though, and most patients can tolerate the discomfort during this time. The intensity can be adjusted, so if you find that the pain is uncomfortable then our team can easily turn down the device. This may mean that more treatments are required, but it will help you to feel more at ease.
It is recommended that you stop doing any kind of physical activity after the treatment has been done. This is especially the case with the region that has been treated. You will need to refrain from any kind of activity for 48 hours after the treatment session has been done. If you can do this, then you will soon find that you are able to help yourself heal.
Do you want to make a positive change to your life? We want you to as well. If you are ready to take that next step, then book an initial consultation with our Pelvic Physiotherapist. We can then help you with any Focused Shockwave Therapy you might need, and we can also help you with any other possible treatment options you may require. You can contact us online, at any time.