Tags: Chronic Pain | prolotherapy | arthritis | joint | pain | treatment

Prolotherapy: Natural Joint Pain Relief

Image: Prolotherapy: Natural Joint Pain Relief
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By    |   Sunday, 13 Sep 2015 09:47 PM


If you’re one of the 52.5 million Americans who suffer from some form of arthritis — or one of the millions more Americans who have other types of head-to-toe joint pain — you probably wish you had better options than drugs or surgery.

If so, you may want to consider prolotherapy, a natural treatment that enlists the body’s innate ability to heal itself.

How It Works

During prolotherapy, a doctor injects certain substances into damaged joints, tendons, and ligaments to trigger a localized inflammatory response. This prompts the body to generate growth factors that promote complete healing.

“I always tell people, before you have surgery, try this’,” says David Borenstein, M.D., of Manhattan Integrative Medicine, a clinic that offers several forms of prolotherapy. “It is much better to have your body heal itself than to have a knee replacement, hip replacement, or shoulder replacement,” he told Newsmax Health.

Conditions That Respond

“Any sort of degenerative condition of joints or painful areas can respond to prolotherapy,” Dr. Borenstein said.

Prolotherapy is considered most useful for osteoarthritis; lower back pain and disc problems; tendonitis; carpal and tarsal tunnel syndromes; tennis or golfer’s elbow; joint dislocation; mouse shoulder (from computer use); frozen shoulder; temporal mandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunctions in the jaw; lateral epicondylosis; other joint, muscle and tendon pain.

According to Dr. Borenstein, prolotherapy may not relieve pain in the most severe cases. But it’s generally a safer, better alternative to drugs or surgery because it’s minimally invasive, has only a few mild side effects, and involves no down time.

“Some people notice results after the first treatment while other people require several treatments,” he says. “The success rate is extremely high, well above 80 or 90 percent.”

Pain Solution

During a standard prolotherapy procedure, the affected area is usually injected with a dextrose (sugar) solution. Other commonly used substances include glycerin, lidocaine, phenol, vitamin B12, and morrhuate sodium (a derivative of cod liver oil).

Patients are in and out of the office within an hour. They usually receive an injection every two to six weeks. A typical course involves three to six injections, although additional injections are sometimes required.

Because most insurers consider prolotherapy an investigational or experimental procedure, it’s rarely covered. So patients are usually responsible for the cost, which ranges from $1,000 to $2,000.

A newer form of prolotherapy — platelet-rich plasma — involves harvesting platelets from the patient’s blood.

Such therapy can cost three or four times as much as standard prolotherapy. But only one injection is as effective as three standard prolotherapy injections. This procedure has become popular among pro athletes.

The newest form of prolotherapy involves harvesting stem cells from a patient’s abdominal fat. It’s even more expensive, but only one injection is as effective as nine standard prolotherapy injections.

“The effects are generally permanent,” says Dr. Borenstein.

Finding a Prolotherapist

Because prolotherapy is a low-profit procedure compared to drugs and surgery, it hasn’t been well-studied. But small-scale studies have shown positive results.

The American Association of Orthopaedic Medicine endorses prolotherapy for management of musculoskeletal pain problems, as does the American Osteopathic Association of Prolotherapy Regenerative Medicine.

Nationwide, some 200 healthcare practitioners specialize in prolotherapy. For more information about finding a prolotherapist in your area, go to getprolo.com.

The full version of this article appeared in Health Radar newsletter. To read more, click here.




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If you're one of the 52.5 million Americans who suffer from some form of arthritis - or one of the millions more Americans who have other types of head-to-toe joint pain - you probably wish you had better options than drugs or surgery. If so, you may want to consider...
prolotherapy, arthritis, joint, pain, treatment
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2015-47-13
Sunday, 13 Sep 2015 09:47 PM
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