Prolotherapy works by raising growth factor. Prolotherapy works to repair weak and painful joint areas, it can be a long term solution rather than a palliative measure. It can be considered prior to the use of long term drugs or surgery in appropriate patients.
Ligaments are structural “rubber bands” that hold bones to bones in joints. Ligaments can become weak or injured and may not heal back to their original strength. This is largely because the blood supply to ligaments is limited, therefore healing is slow, and not always complete. Ligaments also have many nerve endings and therefore there is pain at the areas where the ligaments are damaged or loose.
Tendons are the name given to tissue which connect muscles to bones. These tendons may also become injured and cause pain.
Prolotherapy uses a local anesthetic, along with a hypertonic dextrose solution, which is injected into the ligament or tendon where it attaches to the bone. This causes a localized inflammation in these weak areas, which then increases the blood supply , flow of nutrients, and stimulates the tissue to repair itself.
Prolotherapy works by “tricking” the body into initializing a healing cascade.
Historically, the use of prolotherapy dates back to Hippocrates who treated dislocated shoulders of soldiers with red-hot needle cautery to stabilize the joint. Since the 1930’s, studies have clearly indicated the effectiveness of prolotherapy in the treatment of chronic musculoskeletal pain arising from post-traumatic and degenerative changes. This includes connective tissue such as ligaments, tendons, fascia, and intervertebral discs.