Shockwave therapy

Extracorporeal shockwave

Shockwave therapy

Shock wave therapy can have a beneficial effect on:

  • Calcified foci in the shoulder area [tendinosis calcarea]
  • tennis elbow ("mouse arm") [epicondylitis humeri radialis]
  • golfer's elbow [epicondylitis humeri ulnaris]
  • Achilles tendon pain [Achillodynia]
  • Painful heel spur [plantar fasciitis with heel spur].
  • Painful patellar tendon insertion [patellar tendinopathy]
  • Delayed or absent bone fracture healing [pseudarthrosis]
  • Muscle tightness, especially with painful neck tension
  • Chronic wounds, especially "open leg" wounds


In shock wave therapy, sound pressure waves are used to treat calcification foci, pain in the area of tendons and tendon attachments, or painful pull-outs of bones and periosteum.


Originally, shock wave therapy was used in urology to break up kidney stones. In orthopedics, we use this technique for the adjacent indications with the goal of reducing pain and improving usability. The radial shock wave we use focuses inside the body in the area of the structure to be treated. The transducer with its variable attachments is permanently guided by the physician. During treatment, the pulse interval and the pulse strength can be individually adjusted and changed to achieve the greatest possible effect. An impulse is heard as a click. Occasionally, a light hammer-like pressure or a fine bleeping is felt. At the beginning of the treatment, a pain can (and should) sometimes be triggered. This often fades after about 500 pulses. A total of 1000-2000 impulses are triggered. Side effects may include occasional bruising, nerve irritation and increased pain (irritant reaction). After 3 treatment sessions at the latest, pain relief and an improvement in findings should have occurred. Otherwise, further shock wave treatment is no longer advisable.


The shock waves stimulate blood flow in the target area to initiate repair processes and locally improve the metabolic state. A sterile inflammatory reaction is produced.

In the first 1-3 days after shock wave treatment, anti-inflammatory painkillers such as Diclofenac (Voltaren®) or Ibuprofen should not be taken if pain occurs. Alternative painkillers will be prescribed by us as needed.


Please ask your attending physician about the costs.

Shockwave therapy is not a benefit of the statutory health insurance, not of all health insurances or professional accident insurances. In individual cases, the costs may be covered by the health insurances/insurances. However, these costs are often tax deductible. 

For self-payers and privately insured persons, we bill according to the scale of charges for physicians (GOÄ).

Studies on shockwave therapy:

Haake M, Deike B, Thon A, Schmitt J.
Value of exact focusing of extracorporeal shock waves (ESWT) in therapy of tendinitis calcarea. A prospective randomized study
Biomed Tech (Berl) 2001; 46(3): 69-74.

Loew M, Daecke W, Kusnierczak D, Rahmanzadeh M, Ewerbeck V.
Shock-wave therapy is effective for chronic calcifying tendinitis of the shoulder
J Bone Joint Surg Br 1999; 81(5): 863-867