Acupuncture with shockwaves

Vortrag am 4. Oktober 2014 in Berlin

Im Rahmen der: "Second international shockwave conference Berlin"
Ort:  Empress Augusta Hospital Berlin



Extracorporal shockwave therapy is well known in orthopaedic medicine for the treatment of tendinoses and trigger-points. Here the shockwaves are pointed with high energy directly onto the painful point, which can be very painful itself. The aim of my clinical observations was to determine if it is possible to treat painful orthopaedic diseases by stimulating acupuncture points near the area and far away from the painful area with low energy shockwaves. As we know from acupressure, many acupuncture points are very sensitive to pressure. This leads to the assumption that shockwaves of low intensity applied to a very small area could be the adequate stimulus for acupuncture points. Such an approach would represent a painless treatment for painful orthopaedic diseases.
At my suggestion, in 2002, the STORZ MEDICAL COMPANY was the first to produce a special applicator for their shockwave devices based on my specifications. This applicator has a diameter of only 6mm and can stimulate acupuncture points. Since 2002 I have been studying opportunities for the treatment of different groups of diseases in my clinical practice. In this endeavour, I compared the treatment of chronic pain diseases of the joints and the lumbar region either with acupuncture with needles alone or in a combination of acupuncture with needles and shockwaves applied to very small areas.
The best results were observed in the treatment of chronic pain diseases such as: gonarthrosis, coxarthrosis and chronic lumbar pain. I was able to observe that the combination of shockwaves applied to very small areas with the stimulation of certain other acupuncture points with needles is much more successful than the treatment with needles alone. The treatment is very well accepted by the patients since it causes nearly no pain. Most of the patients reported marked improvement or were even pain free after only six treatments.
The treatment of pressure sensitive acupuncture points with low energy shockwaves can be very effective. The stimulation with shockwaves has an even better effect on certain points than the stimulation with needles. The effect lasts very long if the treatment with the same combination of points is repeated at a frequency of two to three times per week. This could be the result of a “learning effect”: The tension in muscles or tendons can be stimulated or reduced if shockwaves of low energy are repeatedly aimed at the relevant pressure receptors. Immediately after the stimulation of the specific points, the tension in the muscles is reduced. However, pain and tension can increase again after one or two days. In most of my observations it took six treatments to achieve a positive long-lasting result.       
Acupuncture with shockwaves is a painless and effective instrument for the treatment of chronic orthopaedic pain diseases.
Key words:
Acupuncture, acupressure, shockwaves, pressure receptors, pressure-sensible points, chronic lumbar pain, gonarthrosis