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Bristol Hospital, The Chesterfield

3 Clifton Hill, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1BN

0117 906 4870
Main Switchboard 0117 987 2727
Sales Enquiries 0117 906 4870
Radiology Department 0117 906 4878

Why choose Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital for Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy?

At our Nuffield Health, The Chesterfield Hospital in Bristol, we do everything we can to make your treatment as smooth and efficient as possible. 

We're conveniently located in Clifton and offer free on-site parking. We can see you quickly at our dedicated sports and exercise clinic and your expert specialist consultant will guide you through the treatment process.

Who is Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy suitable for?

Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy treatment is a highly effective treatment available for patients with:

This can be a very successful second line treatment for patients who fail to respond to appropriate physiotherapy or other conservative treatments.

Shockwave therapy is a non-surgical treatment, and works by delivering impulses of energy, targeted to specific damaged tissues within the abnormal tendon. This increases the blood flow within the affected area, stimulating cell regeneration and healing, and decreasing local factors which can cause pain.

Before shockwave therapy is considered you will have a full clinical assessment. This may include an MRI or ultrasound scan.

What happens during shockwave therapy?

Your consultant will work with you to identify the exact area of pain and apply a gel-like substance to the area to promote the process.

A probe is pressed onto the affected area and the shockwaves are delivered through the skin. The impulses are delivered through the skin as a shockwave that spreads inside the injured tissue as an aspherical ‘radial' wave. These radial shockwaves initiate an inflammation-like response in the injured tissue that is being treated, and prompts the body to respond naturally by increasing blood circulation, the number of blood vessels and therefore metabolism in the injured tissue.

The shockwaves are felt as pulses which are a little uncomfortable but not painful. Typically your first treatment will start with a low level of intensity and increase this to a point where you feel comfortable. Patients are typically treated in an outpatient environment (not in theatre), and the procedure does not require any type of sedation or anaesthetic.

Shock-wave therapy treatments are usually performed at weekly intervals. Each treatment session takes about 20 minutes and you may need between 3 treatment sessions (possibly 5 for resistant problems).

After shockwave therapy

Many patients experience an improvement in symptoms almost immediately while others take several weeks to respond. You may notice a reddening or swelling of the area with some patients experiencing a brief increase in pain. It may take several weeks to see an overall benefit. It is suggested that your referring GP or surgeon reviews you at 6-8 weeks to assess your overall progress.

Patient testimonial

"I love being active and when I pulled my Achilles, I was knocked for six. After 3 months of physiotherapy, it was clear that things weren't improving. That's when my physiotherapist suggested Shockwave therapy.

The results were incredible. I walked out after the first session and felt instantly so much better. After just 2 sessions,  I was back running. After another 1 or 2 sessions, I was back on the tennis court. I've had many different treatments for my Achilles but Shockwave therapy has by far been the best."  -  Russell Cotter