Are you sick and tired of chronic pain and injuries that won’t go away? Don’t lose hope! The Heel Pain Center of Central Virginia is now offering Extracorpeal Pulse Activation Treatment (EPAT), a cutting edge technology proven to increase the rate of healing for soft tissue injuries.
EPAT, also called Shockwave Therapy, was developed in Europe by the company CuraMedix, but is now being used by doctors world wide. EPAT is an FDA approved emerging technology that delivers non-invasive low frequency (8-11 Hz) acoustic sound waves into a localized area. The sound waves act as pressure, and penetrate deep through your soft tissue. The energy emitted causes the cells in your soft tissue to release certain biochemicals that intensify the body’s natural healing process. These biochemicals allow for the building of an array of new microscopic blood vessels in your soft tissue. Overall, EPAT increases the nutrient flow to the chronically injured tissue, stimulating your cell metabolic rate, and giving hope for those who are considering surgery as their only option.
EPAT studies promise that, with EPAT treatments, you will have your cake and eat it too: first off, you can continue the activities that you love through treatment. Secondly you will not need surgery. Finally, you will still reap positive results – many times, more positive results than any other available treatment. In fact, the results of other treatments such cortisteroidal injections, orthoses, e-stim, and even surgery, seem to be significantly less effective in research studies than EPAT. Moreover, more than 80% of patients who have failed to respond to anything other treatment are relieved of their pain after being treated with EPAT. Furthermore, While studies on ultrasound methods have been conflicting (Alexander, L.D. et al 2009), EPAT therapy studies, even when conducted by skeptics of EPAT, have seen resounding success in EPAT effectiveness to cure soft tissue maladies (Saxena 2011; Gerdesmeyer, L. 2008; Ibrahim, I. M. in press; Rompe, J.D. 2009; Rompe, J. D. 2008; Rompe, J. D. 2007; Rompe, J. D. 2009; Rompe, J. D. 2009; Furia, J. P. 2009). These studies, with high standards of wellness and success rates, show between 75% – 95% success with EPAT.
After trying other types of treatment (cortisone injections, stretching, anti-inflammatories, night splints, physical therapy, and orthotic devices), you might be disheartened to start considering surgery for your injury. However, consult Dr. Murray and Dr. Chang about EPAT, since it might be a viable option instead of invasive surgery. EPAT is a small machine with a trigger end that looks like an ultrasound. It is administered once a week for a series of three weeks (up to five weeks), each taking approximately fifteen minutes (depending on the area of injury). Dr. Murray and Dr. Chang will apply coupling gel and use the EPAT on the area, in essence, breaking the soft tissue down and providing an opportunity for your cell responses to quickly get rid of dead cells and regenerate new ones. In essence, this is the most rapid stimulation of cell generation, known to have the most rapid healing rate of any technology out there.
EPAT can be used for acute and chronic musculo-skeletal pain – even knots, dysfunction, plantar fasciitis, Achilles Tendonitis and tendonosis, chronic heel pain, tendonal insertional pain, acute and chronic muscle pain, myofascial trigger points, and the list goes on. There have been very few side effects reported – in few cases, skin bruising may occur, and patients may feel sore afterward, as though they have worked out. Patients who choose EPAT treatment should not take NSAIDs (including ibuprofen, Motrin, Advil, Naproxen, Aleve, and Aspirin) for two weeks prior to and one month after the administration of EPAT, as they interfere with the hormones that regenerate your cells.
EPAT is available for a wide range of patients. Research suggests to postpone EPAT treatment for pregnant women, for deep venous thrombosis or malignancy cases, or if you are taking blood thinners. These studies suggest that women should wait until four months after pregnancy to receive EPAT treatment, waiting for regular swelling in the feet to go down, and for the hormones that act as muscle relaxants during pregnancy to level out.
While the initial fees for EPAT are expensive, you can rest assured that they are cost-effective in the long run. EPAT is not covered by insurance. You can expect to pay $500 for a series of three treatments, not including the fee of a co-pay for your initial office visit and evaluation charge, (after which there will be no co-pay). Inquire with your qualified health savings account or your employer’s flexible payment medical savings account, as these can usually be used to pay for the treatment. If a 4th and 5th treatment is necessary, you can expect to pay $150 per treatment. Despite these initial costs, remember that surgery is much pricier, and that EPAT is proven to be much more effective than other treatments. Additionally, patients treated with EPAT are immediately fully weight bearing, have no incision, no risk of infection or scar tissue, experience very few (if any) side effects, and do not need to be put under anesthesia. Overall, EPAT is sure to save money and time, and to accelerate your road back to having healthy feet!
So inquire with Dr. Murray and Dr. Chang to see if EPAT is the right treatment for you. The Heel Pain Center of Central Virginia is excited to bring such an effective and preeminent technology to the office, in order to serve you with top quality and cutting edge medical care!