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Foot Ankle Clin. 2010 Dec;15(4):651-62. doi: 10.1016/j.fcl.2010.07.002.

Shock wave therapy as a treatment of nonunions, avascular necrosis, and delayed healing of stress fractures.

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SUN Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, Department of Orthopedic Surgery, 900 Buffalo Road, Lewisburg, PA 17837, USA.


Shock wave therapy (SWT) stimulates angiogenesis and osteogenesis. SWT is commonly used to treat soft tissue musculoskeletal conditions such as fasciopathies and tendinopathies. Recent basic science and clinical data suggest that SWT can also be used to treat disorders of bone. Nonunions, avascular necrosis, and delayed healing of stress fractures have all been successfully treated with SWT. Success rates with SWT are equal to those with standard surgical treatment, but SWT has the advantage of decreased morbidity. The procedure is safe, well tolerated, yields few complications, and, typically, can be performed on an outpatient basis. SWT is a viable noninvasive alternative to stimulate healing of bone.

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