Individuals of all age groups can experience musculoskeletal pain.
Many of the activities that we engage in have the potential to injure soft tissue structures like tendons and ligaments. These injuries tend to go untreated, yet soft tissue injuries are a major source of musculoskeletal pain. When weakened, they can contribute to joint instability and degenerative conditions like osteoarthritis.
Soft tissue injuries, such as sprain or tendon microtears, are hard to diagnose. Additionally, poor circulation often halts the natural healing process. Over time, pain related to soft tissue damage can become chronic and disrupt other mechanical aspects of the body (like joints and nerves).
Luckily, prolotherapy, an injection-based regenerative treatment, has shown tremendous promise when it comes to treating musculoskeletal pain. Prolotherapy is successful in treating pain of the lower back, wrist, knee, rotator cuff, and sciatica to name a few. Furthermore, the regenerative capacity of prolotherapy injections restores damaged tissues to not only treat pain but regain mechanical function.
What is Prolotherapy?
Prolotherapy, previously known as sclerotherapy, is an injection-based approach to the delivery of healing substances that promote tissue repair. Pro-inflammatory dextrose and Neoplasmid solutions, for example, have a positive effect on cell proliferation and fibrogenesis. The new cells help reinforce and repair damaged structures and alleviate pain associated with those damages.
Different kinds of prolotherapy solutions are used for injection, and these are chosen based on the problem being treated. Amongst the prolotherapy types are Pro-inflammatory dextrose, prolozone, PRP (platelet-rich plasma), and stem cell (from bone marrow or fat) solutions.
Types of Prolotherapy
Depending on what is being treated, a physician may recommend a variety of prolotherapy treatment types. Each treatment is effective in treating pain and promoting soft tissue repair.
Dextrose is a proliferant that triggers the release of growth factors through an inflammation healing cascade. Hypertonic dextrose in therefore injected into and around the injury to induce inflammation. Growth factors repair and promote the growth of tendons, ligaments and other soft tissues. High sugar concentrations (Dextrose) also elevate cell protein/ DNA synthesis, and cell volume.
Platelet-rich Plasma (PRP):
As the name entails, PRP is a form of prolotherapy which involves the injection of a platelet concentrated plasma solution to the site of injury. Platelets are tissue repair components that release various growth factors that drive forward healing pathways. The patient’s blood is collected and subsequently centrifuged. This process separates blood plasma and concentrates platelet content. Cosmetic concerns are also a common reason to receive PRP injections. For instance, the popular vampire facial uses PRP. When injected into the face, it yields a more youthful look and repairs scars.
Prolozone injections use an ozone (O3) solution. Ozone can have pro- or anti-inflammatory depending on amount administered and can have an analgesic effect of osteoarthritis. Often used to treat back pain and sciatica by helping soft tissue heal and alleviate pain from arthritic joints.
Stem cells for prolotherapy are from the patient’s own bone marrow or adipose (fat) tissue. The cells collected are adult pluripotent mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) which have the potential to take the place other cells in a variety of tissue structures and induce healing. Bone marrow stem cells, for example, can be used for bone repair where it is needed.
Would you like to learn more about prolotherapy or even experience it yourself? CORE has introduced a number of osteopathic and prolotherapy based treatments to get you out of pain and become a healthier you! Give us a call for an introductory offer on treatments!