Softwave uses a technology called lithotripsy to heal injured tissue. The way it works is there will be an applicator and hose that is filled with water. In the middle of the applicator hose is an electrical wire that ends up with a spark plug at a water filled membrane. An electrical spark is released into the water filled membrane and turns it into a supersonic wave. We use ultrasound gel as a conductor to drive this acoustic wave into your tissue. It leaves the applicator at 3355 mph. The interesting thing about this supersonic shock wave is that when it hits healthy tissue, you don’t feel anything, but when it hits damaged tissue, you will feel it either as a sharp tapping, an electrical sensation, or even pain. This helps us localize the areas of damaged tissue that we want to treat.
When the supersonic wave hits this damaged tissue, the cells within that tissue react to the shock waves and release chemicals that attract, stimulate and activate cells that cause your body to regenerate new tissue and heal. The main cells that you may have heard of are called stem cells. Stem cells create new tissue. This device also activates cells that will build new blood vessels to the tissues involved and permanently increase the blood supply to those tissues.
There are two therapeutic aspects to this technology. A short term effect and long term effect. The short term effect is to break up scar tissue and adhesions, to increase blood flow, and to reduce inflammation and pain. These short term effects usually occur immediately and up to 15 – 20 hours after each treatment. The long term effects are to activate these cells that repair the tissue and increase the number of blood vessels. This aspect of the treatment takes between 10-12 weeks after each visit.
So, as the treatment works on that tissue you should feel less and less from the application of Softwave itself as the tissue heals. We need to be focused on one area during this course of care so that your body has the best chance of using the stem cells available to the maximum potential. We follow treatment protocols and recommendations from the manufacturer. Which means that we only treat one area at a time over a 4-8 week period of time, depending on your case.
The doctor will usually do the first treatment, and most follow up treatments will be done by the assistants. Everyone who does the treatment at our clinic has been certified by Softwave. The assistants are taught to follow the protocols dictated by the doctor, and to focus on one area at a time.