We are pleased and excited to announce the addition of shock wave therapy to Buckeye Veterinary Service. Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) is a highly intense acoustic wave of short duration aimed to treat specific ailments in the horse. The origination of therapy in human medicine was its use in the disintegration of kidney stones. Through time human doctors began using the machine for more therapeutic endeavors, and equine practitioners were quick to follow. We were fortunate enough to purchase the Vet-Gold focus machine. This is the newest and most advanced system available. It uses a focus type head which has been proven much more effective than the older radial models. This machine has both a focused and soft focus head allowing for precise location of the waves. For example in a fresh tendon bow, the soft focus head is used so the point of maximum intensity is superficial, where it is needed. The focused head goes deeper and is stronger. This is what we will use on chronic injuries or structures that are deep like backs or stifles.
Shock waves produce increased pressure and tensile forces which substantially increase blood circulation in the affected area. In acute injuries, the waves cause an organization of muscle or ligament fibers. This decreases healing time while allowing a stronger, more defined regrowth of fibers. Organized healing creates a smaller, stronger tendon or ligament. This equates to less scar tissue and a faster recovery. Our plans at Buckeye are to combine shock wave with PRP and physical therapies to promote beneficial healing and decreased lay-up time. More chronic injuries can also benefit from shock wave. Initially, older lesions are stimulated by the treatment and become more acute in nature. This will be a great option for those horses which have an injury which seems "stuck" and hasn't progressed in quite some time.
Common uses for shock wave include tendon or ligament injuries, wound closure, bone formation, and is even being used to correct angular limb deformities. Proper diagnosis by ultrasound or radiographs will often be the first step we take when confronted by a case which we may use this modality. PRP, IRAP, HA, Tildren or systemic anti-inflammatories may be used in combination with the shock wave. Normal therapy is 3 to 7 treatments. Cost varies depending on the number of shocks required, but normally is around $250. We are also putting together a package of PRP and shock treatments that should help you to save money while allowing us to bill the therapies concurrently making it easier on our end.
In conclusion, we are pleased to introduce shock wave as another treatment modality for your animal. We hope to incorporate it when needed to increase the strength and organization of the injury while decreasing the healing time. As always we appreciate you letting us bring new treatments into the practice. This keeps your animals on the mend, and us excited by using new technology.