Shockwave therapy has been used by physiotherapists for years for the treatment of tendinopathies in particular and also in the management of chronic inflammation and scar tissue that can occur following a longstanding injury to a joint or surgical intervention.
It was first designed for breaking up kidney and gallstones by means of its strong acoustic properties which allowed the stones then to be passed without surgery. Later, it was used for musculoskeletal conditions as it can penetrate deep down between the tissue layers with minimum pressure.
We at Bodybalance Physiotherapy find Shockwave Therapy very useful for increasing scar mobility and promoting healing after a Caesarean Delivery. We still use manual techniques on this area of the lower tummy but once the scar has healed we can add this as a way of improving mobility.
All scar tissue by its very nature wants to tighten and shorten. The brain automatically reduces the mobility of this area to protect it and therefore on top of the actual tissue damage from the surgery, immobile scar tissue stops the surrounding muscles of the abdomen from firing and switching on as effectively.
This happens in other surgeries too such as hip replacements (the obvious wasting of Gluteus Medius) and after knee surgery (the Vastus Medialis Obliquus tends to also switch off).
When this happens with abdominal surgery the natural corset of muscle that you need the most in your fourth trimester can not be as effective.
Delay of scar healing after a C-section can also stem from an infection of the site, strenuous movement too early, poor nutrition and sleep due to the demands of a newborn, and an individual’s baseline for healing.
Shockwave Therapy helps restore the natural slide and glide that should occur between the stomach muscles, peritoneum, and uterus during normal movement. There are multiple layers of dense connective tissue called fascia that wraps around and between these layers, which are made more accessible with this therapy.
Symptoms that the scar mobility is not at functional level might include, back pain, ongoing numbness or pain at the site, a sluggish bowel, bladder urgency, or even pain/ discomfort during intercourse that was not there before.
Clients may need anywhere in the region of 2 or 6 sessions over a period of 6 months. It’s different for each woman as it might be her first section or second C-section. If breastfeeding, this requires more energy so if there is not enough rest and good nutrition, the body has little reserves left for optimum healing.
Shockwave Therapy is always done in conjunction with rehabilitation of the abdominal wall and core alongside any other physiotherapy techniques required.
Please contact us for further information.