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Award winning chiropractor treats pandemic injuries with GDT Combination Therapy – and treats an Olympic athlete
An award-winning chiropractor from South Wales has seen an increase in injuries in people who took up running during the pandemic.
Daniel Morgan of Beaches Chiropractic in Port Talbot has been using Electro Medical Systems (EMS)’s Guided DolorClast Therapy (Laser and Shockwave combination therapy) to treat them.
He said: “Over the last year I’ve seen a lot of people who have injured themselves exercising. They’ve been trying to keep themselves physically and mentally fit but many have overdone it. A lot of runners push themselves to do too much and as a result they overload and damage their tendons.
“I’ve also seen injuries that have been caused by people exercising on their own rather than in a gym. Many are coming to see me with tendon injuries, usually of the lower limb.
“Tendon problems usually occur when there’s a drastic change in a person’s load. If they do too much there can be a tendon reaction. Most people wait a while for an injury to settle and hope it will get better but it won’t because they keep running or training on it. That’s when they come to see us.
“Typically, we give them shockwave treatment as it’s such a well-established treatment. We get them back on the road to recovery in combination with rehabilitation.
“But combining shockwave with laser treatment, while very new, gives a better outcome and a faster recovery. I apply the laser treatment before the shockwave for optimum results.
“Treating with the laser before is much better than just treating with shockwaves alone. It allows us to get more energy into the tendon which will encourage a quicker healing result. Using the laser first acts as an analgesic and that means we can put more energy in the shockwave without as much pain.
“The usual treatment plan is once a week for three weeks, then we leave a gap of three weeks and, if needed, give another session once a week for three weeks.
“I recently treated a man in his mid-thirties who came to see me with multiple issues including plantar fasciitis, a common injury with runners, and an acute Achilles problem. He was limping and in pain under his heel.
“Road running is tough on the joints and runners often put up with pain for a long time hoping it will get better or that they can run through it. It’s why we are seeing lots of people now who can’t cope anymore and are desperate for treatment.
“In this patient’s case, I gave him five sessions of shockwave and laser, which cost him £65 per treatment (the course was just £325), and it cured him.
“People have certainly looked at their priorities a bit differently over lockdown. Many are starting to spend more on their health because they haven’t been able to go on holiday.”
Daniel, who works with Welsh Rugby Region Scarlets Rugby, has also been using Guided DolorClast Therapy, which helps treat musculoskeletal pain, on a number of professional athletes. Many are referred to Beaches Chiropractic by their club physiotherapists specifically for shockwave treatment.
He said: “GDT Combination Therapy has worked very well on an Olympian track sprinter and a professional rugby player I’m treating.
“The sprinter came to me with an Achilles injury and when she first came in she couldn’t walk without pain. She’s on to her third session of laser and shockwave therapy and is significantly better. In fact, she is back running again now with no pain.
“The professional rugby player came in with a patella injury which was resolved after just four sessions. He had been having shockwave treatment with his previous club but instead I gave him a combination of shockwave and laser treatment and that resolved the issue.”
Clinical research has shown that Guided DolorClast Therapy can deliver better results than traditional treatments such as steroid injections. It is being used to treat a number of conditions including tennis elbow, back pain, anterior knee pain, knee osteoarthritis and plantar fasciopathy.
The treatment is supplied by medical products specialist Algeos, which provides innovative products to those in the Podiatry, Physiotherapy, Orthotics and Prosthetics markets.
Algeos also provides rehab products that can support the GDT concept.
For health practitioners such as Dan, a qualified Sonographer, the combined therapy is an opportunity to increase treatment fees.
Dan said: “The equipment is a great investment and being able to offer the laser treatment is a good sales opportunity which also justifies an extra charge to the patient.”
Olympic athlete Mica Moore has cured her tendon pain with the pioneering new combination therapy from Switzerland and the help of chiropractor Daniel Morgan.
Mica, 28, who competed for Wales in the 4x100 metres relay at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the 2-women bobsleigh event at the 2018 Winter Olympics, was suffering with chronic tendonitis in her Achilles.
The condition causes pain and swelling in the back of the heel on walking or running.
Mica said: “As a sprinter the majority of my training is power based and it puts a lot of forces through the tendons. I developed Achilles tendonitis in my right Achilles tendon.”
“I went to see Dan after my tendon issue became chronic and he used a combination of the two therapies. The laser helps to aid the shockwave therapy and I definitely noticed an improvement in my pain tolerance.
“The treatment is relatively quick and has allowed me to return to competing and training while ensuring that I haven’t caused myself injury or damage.
“I had the treatment over a three-week period which was enough to allow my Achilles to get to a manageable state and continue with prehab, isometric and rehab exercises at home and continue to run.
“The pain level took a few weeks to calm and reduce. I probably started the treatment at around a pain level of 9 out of 10 and by week three it was around 5 out of 10.
“Over the following weeks, up to week six after treatment, the pain slowly dispersed. This was great as it meant as long as I managed load, I could still continue to train.
“It took around 5 weeks for me to have confidence to put load through my Achilles and around 10-12 weeks to run in my sprint spikes which are a lot flatter than running trainers.
“But this is such a quick turnaround in comparison to other athletes I know who haven’t had this treatment and have had to reduce their load for three months before even working through isometric resistance and rehab phases.
“Throughout my treatment I was able to run in trainers on a curved running machine so I could continue to work on strengthening the tendon with load and work on running mechanics to help with future flare-ups.
“I’m really grateful for this combination treatment and how it’s helped with my recovery from tendon pain. I’m not sure I would still be competing and training if I hadn’t had access to it.”
A. Algeo Limited is registered in England No. 437100