How do electromagnetic handpieces differ from piezoelectric handpieces?
1. Deeper penetration of shockwaves
Electromagnetic shockwaves can reach depths of up to 6.5cm with a stand-off and 10-12cm without a stand-off, making them effective for treating both deep and superficial conditions such as proximal hamstrings tendinopathy or lumbar facet joint pain.
In contrast, piezoelectric shockwave penetration depth is limited to between 0.5cm and 5cm, even with the use of stand-offs.
2. Five times larger area treated
Each handpiece has different sized focal treatment zones, this plays a key role in treatment effectiveness. Piezoelectric generated waves have the smallest focal zone, which can make it difficult to accurately target the correct area. The electromagnetic handpiece, on the other hand, has a larger treatment zone, allowing for greater accuracy.
A simple pivoting movement of the electromagnetic handpiece allows treatment of an area more than five times larger than the area covered by the piezoelectric handpiece. Choosing the inappropriate stand-off for a piezoelectric handpiece can also result in inefficient treatment because the target area of the pain is missed.
The linear movement of the electromagnetic handpiece also results in a deeper and more complete treatment of painful zones with the electromagnetic shockwave whereas the piezoelectric handpiece covers a narrower treatment volume with its linear movement.
For the highest effectiveness of the shockwave’s force, the maximum energy pulses should be focused on the point where the treatment is supposed to be administered.
3. Consistency of energy output
The electromagnetic handpiece maintains a consistently high level of energy output throughout its entire service life, while the piezoelectric handpiece experiences electric fatigue, leading to a decrease in performance and the need for more pulses per treatment session.
4. Functionality and Usability
The electromagnetic handpiece is lighter and easier to use, with a trigger on the handpiece, unlike the piezoelectric, which is large and requires a foot pedal. This makes the operator experience much more comfortable with the electromagnetic handpiece. The weight of the STORZ hand-piece is around 650g, whereas the Peizowave handpiece is almost double that, at 1200g.