Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy: Cutting-Edge Treatment for Chronic Heel Pain

In this video from NBC's "The Doctor's" our Dr. B. discussing and performing a Shockwave Therapy treatment for plantar fascitiis before a live studio audience.


UFAI is one of the only providers in the US that offers high-intensity and low-intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (also known as orthotripsy). Our team is specially trained in shockwave therapy as a treatment to reduce heel pain.


Our patients rely on our decades of experience developing, researching and using the latest technologies to help bring pain-free activity back to their lives.


Whether your want to compete in sports again or play with your kids, you can trust our physicians to know if advanced therapies such as shockwave therapy would likely be effective.

Shockwave Therapy for Plantar Fasciitis

How does Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy work?


Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy, like other advanced treatments at UFAI (such as PRP, Relef, etc.), is usually used when your injury is in a chronic state. This is when conservative treatments like stretching, physical therapy and orthotics fail to provide adequate pain relief.  


All of these treatments produce various levels of controlled trauma that causes the area to inflame and natural healing to begin.


What is the procedure like?


Using a specially-designed hand piece, EWST works by focusing shockwaves directly at the painful part of your foot. The shockwaves produce micro traumas to the tissue that’s causing your plantar fasciitis.  


Your body reacts to these micro traumas by signaling for an increased blood supply to the painful area, as well as breaking down injured tissue and calcifications. In turn, blood vessel formation is increased and nutrients flood the area. Your body then heals itself.


This in-office, 15-minute procedure, is typically performed with almost no pain and no anesthesia. Normally, patients receive three shockwave treatments over as many weeks.  Low-intensity EWST always takes place in the office, requires no anesthesia and consists of three treatments. Since it is less intense as high intensity, it allows for a more comfortable lifestyle while healing.


In some cases, high-intensity shockwave therapy may be the best treatment option. Since this can cause more discomfort during the procedure, it may require monitored anesthesia. The good news is it usually requires just one treatment.


What is Post-Shockwave recovery like?


Occasionally, patients notice dull pain in the area of the procedure, but that rarely lasts more than 24 hours. Your doctor will explain how to deal with any discomfort, which can usually be controlled with over-the-counter pain medication.


However, even if you are pain-free directly after your procedure, we recommend refraining from any activity that may be stressful to your foot for at least two days. It typically takes several months to reap all the pain-reduction benefits of shockwave therapy.


University Foot and Ankle Institute: pioneering shockwave therapy for plantar fasciitis


You can trust physicians at the University Foot and Ankle Institute to accurately assess your condition and provide a series of concise shockwave treatments. We are nationally regarded as the premier group of foot and ankle specialists and are specially trained in extracorporeal shockwave therapy for plantar fasciitis treatment.


We realize that you rely on our decades of combined experience to develop effective foot and ankle therapy that brings the joy back to activity, whether it’s all-out sports or simply a stroll around the park. We also understand when advanced therapies may likely be ineffective and a poor use of your health care dollars.


If you’re suffering from foot pain and have not received adequate relief or care, or need an independent second opinion, please contact us today to setup an appointment for a consultation.

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    The staff up front, especially Michelle, was great with scheduling and billing issues. The therapy team, especially Suzanne and Kristel, were incredible (as usual). Everyone is always friendly and professional, and I ...
    Kevin D.
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    Dr. B gave me excellent advisement regarding several bruised toe nails on my right foot. His assistant Alex trimmed my toe nails. I was a little scared at first, but he had very good technique and it didn't hurt at all.
    Sarah A.
  • Prior to surgery, snowboarding had become extremely painful with numbness, sharp pain & an overall inability to have control over my foot. This past weekend I went snowboarding & was completely amazed at how incredibl...
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    Doc Briskin was a great doctor and a straight shooter in the advice he gave to me. My toe/bone spur problem is greatly improved, and we shall see how far the healing process goes!
    David M.
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    This is my second experience, first plantar fasciitis, now my Achilles, lucky me. :( I would not go anywhere else and my feet are glad. Both times I have totally avoided surgery and for the Achilles, I was REALLY con...
    Steven L.
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    Went to another podiatrist for months before seeing Dr. Bob Baravarian.  The Foot & Ankle Institute is run like a well oiled machine.  I got an appointment quickly, he identified my issue in 2 minutes, treated me, and...
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