COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL
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Comparison of radial shockwaves and conventional physiotherapy for treating plantar fasciitis.

Clinics 2009
OBJECTIVE: To compare radial shockwave treatment and conventional physiotherapy for plantar fasciitis.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirty-two patients with plantar fasciitis were included in this study. They were randomly divided into two groups. Group 1 was composed of 16 patients who underwent 10 physiotherapy sessions each, consisting of ultrasound, kinesiotherapy and instruction for stretching exercises at home. Group 2 was composed of 16 patients who underwent three applications of radial shockwaves (once a week) and received instruction for stretching exercises at home. Pain and ability to function were evaluated before treatment, immediately afterwards, and three months later. The mean age of the patients was 47.3 +/- 10.3 years (range 25-68); 81% were female, 87% were overweight, 56% had bilateral impairment, and 75% used analgesics regularly.

RESULTS: Both treatments were effective for pain reduction and for improving the functional abilities of patients with plantar fasciitis. The effect of the shockwaves was apparent sooner than physiotherapy after the onset of treatment.

CONCLUSION: Shockwave treatment was no more effective than conventional physiotherapy treatment when evaluated three months after the end of treatment.

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