Shockwave therapy is a non-surgical treatment widely used to treat various diseases due to its pro-angiogenic and anti-inflammatory effects. However, the exact way it works is not fully understood. Researchers investigated the effect of shockwaves on macrophages, immune cells that play a crucial role in inflammation and tissue regeneration.
The study found that shockwaves did not activate resting macrophages at any energy level. However, when used at low energy, shockwaves inhibited the expression of pro-inflammatory markers in M1 macrophages and promoted anti-inflammatory markers in M2 macrophages. Shockwaves also increased the production of anti-inflammatory cytokines and decreased the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines.
These findings suggest that shockwave therapy may promote tissue regeneration and remodeling by modifying inflammation. By reducing inflammation and promoting healing, shockwave therapy may potentially help treat a variety of diseases that involve tissue damage and inflammation.
Shockwave therapy is already used to treat conditions such as plantar fasciitis, tennis elbow, and erectile dysfunction. This study provides new insight into how it may work at the molecular level and suggests that it could have broader applications in promoting tissue regeneration and reducing inflammation.