Traditional methods and technologies merge into the future of physical therapy

As a practitioner, Stacey Roberts has seen it all. A physical therapist and registered nurse with a master’s degree, she has worked in the field of orthopedics, sports medicine, acute and chronic pain since 1990.

But her new business, New You Health and Wellness, puts a different emphasis on her functional medicine training. Along with the conventional methods she applies to her patients, she is one of the few doctors in the field to use a device called SoftWave, a proprietary electro-hydraulic acoustic shock wave device that is at the forefront of medical innovation.

In short, Roberts says the SoftWave is simply the most effective and powerful electro-hydraulic shock wave device she’s ever seen, and it works to relieve pain faster than any other electromagnetic treatment plan on the market.

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“When I first heard about it, I was really skeptical because in 33 years in PT, I’ve never come across a modality that really did much to move the needle,” says Roberts, who opened her Wauwatosa practice in 2021. “I then observed a treatment where a patient had some pain in their shoulder and after the treatment they were able to lift their arm up and without pain.”

Although Roberts still uses conventional, hands-on physical therapy methods along with SoftWave, she says she was amazed that the patient was pain-free days after her treatment—and is still pain-free two years later.

That was enough evidence for Roberts to dive into the research and eventually open his clinic.

Roberts says, “These are people who have chronic problems and very chronic pain. They have tried everything else. Tried PT, tried chiropractic, tried acupuncture.

That’s where she comes in.

The wand-like device does not look intimidating and is not uncomfortable during treatment. The applicator has an electrode inside that emits energy that moves through the water—”unlike other devices that are electromagnetic, it moves five times faster through water than it does through air,” says Roberts.

Our bodies convert this energy into an acoustic wave, which Roberts says travels four to six inches deep into the tissue. Our brains initiate localized cell signaling, even bringing stem cells to the area to reduce inflammation. Unlike other treatments, you don’t have to come back again and again for it to work. Roberts says most patients feel results after three to six sessions.

Roberts says he can also reach deeper tissue with his mechanical work after the SoftWave treatment.

On the patient’s side, it feels like a whistling or tapping sound that gets stronger when Roberts hits a sore spot, but it doesn’t hurt. At worst, the area is slightly sore for a short time, but I found that any discomfort disappeared well before the end of the session.

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Now her patentees are praising her, and it makes sense because Roberts is well-respected in her field and has earned their trust.

She has mentored more than 100 medical professionals in her training in women’s health and couple fertility and was an associate clinical professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program. Roberts has also appeared on “Oprah,” locally on “Morning Blend,” and on several news and radio shows in the U.S. and Australia.

“I had a swollen ankle for over 10 years and never understood why, despite years of regular physical therapy and multiple scans,” says patient Molly Fay. “Stacey used a combination of therapies and now I’m back to doing the things I love.”

According to Dolores Gauthier, a patent pending double knee replacement, Roberts’ treatments did what others could not.

“After a few weeks, I knew the therapy was working. Within a few months my knees were obviously much better and I knew for sure that I didn’t need knee replacements. I have continued to use the therapy she suggested for other age related aches and pains that come up to speed healing and sometimes I get a pinch in my knees. They’ll never be the 21-year-old knees I dream of, but at 70 I’m very happy with how good they feel every day.”

And Ruth Tsakonas came in with a shoulder and angle problem…and left in much better shape. Tsakonas says, “The shoulder was 80% better after the first treatment and completely better after the second or third. My foot/ankle has been swollen for over 3.5 years from an injury. After one treatment, his size was normal for the first time in years. I am so grateful for her help.”

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Of course, Roberts doesn’t limit his practice to just SoftWave. She is a big believer in addressing gut health, exercise programs and other cutting edge therapies that I am trying out myself and will report back on the results. However, I can confirm that several SoftWave treatments have relieved the lumbar and buttock pain I experienced during two back surgeries. I’ll never have a completely normal back after two discectomies, but I’m definitely noticing a longer pain-free stretch between flare-ups.

Although Roberts’ SoftWave treatments are FDA-approved, they are not yet covered by insurance—although Roberts has participated in several studies to show insurance companies that it is a useful alternative to traditional PT alone.

Her fee is $195 for an initial evaluation, then $150 per treatment — but again, Roberts is keen to emphasize that this is not a long-term, slow-moving approach to pain management.

Roberts says, “We know we want you to have this pain relief for the long term. So we’re not just going to do the shock wave, we’re going to do manual therapy. We will do exercises if necessary. We will do everything we can to help you function better as a result of less pain with this device.”

New You Health and Wellness is located at 10919 W. Bluemound Road. Visit her website or call (414) 299-8121 for more information.

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