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Advances in Therapy

, Volume 29, Issue 9, pp 799–814 | Cite as

SWAAT Study: Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy and Arginine Supplementation and Other Nutraceuticals for Insertional Achilles Tendinopathy

  • Angela NotarnicolaEmail author
  • Vito Pesce
  • Giovanni Vicenti
  • Silvio Tafuri
  • Maria Forcignanò
  • Biagio Moretti
Original Research

Abstract

Introduction

Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) produces good results in the treatment of insertional Achilles tendinopathy. The efficacy of combined administration of dietary supplements with ESWT has not yet been studied.

Methods

In this prospective, randomized clinical trial, Shock Waves therapy and Arginine for Achilles Tendinopathy (SWAAT), subjects affected by insertional Achilles tendinopathy were enrolled. Between January and October 2011, all participants underwent three sessions of ESWT. In addition, the patients in the experimental group received a daily dietary supplement containing arginine, Vinitrox (Bio Serae Laboratories SAS, Bram, France), collagen, methyl-sulfonyl-methane, vitamin C, and bromelain, while the control group patients received placebo.

Results

There was no statistically significant difference in the visual analog scale (VAS) score between the two groups at 2 months (3.9 vs. 5.1; P = 0.07), whereas at 6 months the value was significantly lower in the experimental group (2.0 vs. 2.9; P = 0.04). The difference in the Ankle-Hindfoot Scale score at 2 and 6 months of follow-up (FU) was significantly in favor of the experimental group (2 months: 85.4 vs. 72.1; P = 0.0035; 6 months: 92.4 vs. 76.5; P = 0.0002). The Roles and Maudsley score also showed a statistically significant difference between the two groups in favor of the experimental arm as regards patient satisfaction (at 2 months: 1.7 vs. 2.8; P < 0.0001; at 6 months: 1.5 vs. 2.3; P < 0.001). There was a statistically significant reduction in tissue oximetry values compared to baseline in both treatment groups at 2 and 6 months of FU. Comparing the groups, only at the last FU, at 6 months, was a significantly lower oximetry value observed in the experimental group versus controls (60.2 vs. 66.0; P = 0.007).

Conclusion

On the basis of the results obtained in this study, the authors conclude that in the treatment of insertional Achilles tendinopathy, ESWT induces a hemodynamic re-equilibrium with an in tendon trophism. The addition of specific dietary supplements could improve the therapeutic response.

Keywords

Achilles tendinopathy Dietary supplements Extracorporeal shockwave therapy Shock waves 

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Copyright information

© Springer Healthcare 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angela Notarnicola
    • 1
    Email author
  • Vito Pesce
    • 1
  • Giovanni Vicenti
    • 1
  • Silvio Tafuri
    • 2
  • Maria Forcignanò
    • 1
  • Biagio Moretti
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Neuroscience and Organs of Sense, Orthopedics SectionFaculty of Medicine and Surgery of University of BariBariItaly
  2. 2.Department of Biomedical Sciences, Hygiene SectionUniversity of Bari, General HospitalBariItaly

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