Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) technology encompasses the use of two distinct forms of sound waves to transfer energy into tissue, resulting in two types of shockwave devices that clinicians can choose to incorporate into their practice.

Focus Shockwaves vs. Radial Pressure Waves

The Chattanooga® Focus Shockwave device generates sound waves via an electromagnetic hand piece with a built-in water buffer, while the Radial Pressure Wave devices utilize a pneumatic/ballistic design. These differences impact the waveforms they produce.13,14

Focused shockwaves have higher peak energy and generate maximal force at a selected depth16. Radial pressure wave devices generate their maximal energy on the skin, which then dissipates as it travels to depth15. Energy levels at depth are dictated by the settings on the machine and the applicator used.

Treatment Applications

Treatment is performed directly on the skin, but is non-invasive. The time alloted for a specific treatment will depend on the area and depth of the tissue being treated. This will normally fall within 2-4 minutes per area treated.


  • Short treatment time (a few minutes)
  • Precise and targeted application
  • Results in a few treatments
  • Non-invasive technology
  • Alternative to medication
RPW Applications
Focus Shockwave Applications
  1. Myofascial trigger points
  2. Disorders of tendons insertions
  3. Pulse vibration massage
  4. Pain and inflammation in orthopaedic conditions
  5. Pulse vibration massage
  6. Plantar fasciitis


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