You are viewing a javascript disabled version of the site. Please enable Javascript for this site to function properly.
Go to headerGo to navigationGo to searchGo to contentsGo to footer
In content section. Select this link to jump to navigation

Focused low-energy extracorporeal shock waves with distally symmetric polyneuropathy (DSPNP): A pilot study


BACKGROUND: Incidental observations led to the question whether ESWT could alleviate the still difficult-to-improve symptoms of DSPNP. METHODS: In a pilot study, out of an original 24 patients with DSPNP, 10 patients with diabetes mellitus were excluded because of their inhomogeneous performances. Of the 14 patients remaining, 6 received one sham treatment at the beginning. All 14 patients were then treated with ESWT to the soles of the feet using the Duolith® shock wave generator (Storz Medical) 3 times weekly for 2 weeks. The assessments were carried out before and after the sham treatment, the first ESWT (question: before and after the first ESWT or only after?) and after 2, 4 and 8 weeks. RESULTS: The placebo treatment did not influence pain or paraesthesia. After the 2 weeks of ESWT, intensity decreased from 100% to 23.6%, rising again after 8 weeks to 45.7% of the original state (p < 0.01). The placebo treatment did however have a great effect on walking abilities. The results of ESWT did not become significant until the 8th week. Step length improved by 14.6% (p < 0.001), walking speed by 24.8% (p < 0.001) and time of dual support during the stance phase of the gait declined by 12.2% (p < 0.009). CONCLUSIONS: Despite the small number of cases, it appears that ESWT can alleviate some of the symptoms of DSPNP.