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About Prolotherapy

PROLOTHERAPY Eliminates Long-standing Pain... Simply... Quickly.... And Without Side Effects.

backache 1620045 crop Does the following describe you?

  • You need surgery or surgery has failed
  • Take anti-inflammatory drugs, but no lasting relief
  • You have had years of pain and told there is no treatment
  • Manipulations / adjustments help but don't last
  • The more you do, the more you hurt
  • You need to change positions all the time
  • You have deep pulling, achy spinal pain
  • You lack endurance
  • Pain interferes with your normal sleep pattern


Prolotherapy involves a short series of injections containing a variety of substances into weakened ligaments, tendons and structural tissues that are overlooked as the source of pain for many common pain conditions. The injected material irritates the tissue. The body reacts by constructing new tissue growth at the site of the injections. This non-surgical, non-drug treatment mobilizes the body's very own natural healing agents, a response that strengthens and stabilizes damaged or weakened tissues and joints, resulting in amazing relief - usually permanent.

The technique was first reported in a 1937 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association by Louis W. Schultz, M.D., an oral surgeon who found he could provide full relief for patients with temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain with injections of fatty acids.

Over the next twenty years, George S. Hackett, M.D., an Ohio physician, applied the technique to patients with a variety of pain problems. He monitored many patients for years to determine the effect of the treatment and reported his findings in leading publications such as Journal of the American Medical Association, American Journal of Surgery, and the British Journal of Physical Medicine.

  1. One of his studies involved 665 patients, ages 15 to 88, who suffered with pain from 3 months to 65 years (average: 4 ½ years). Twelve years after treatment 82 percent of the patients considered themselves long "cured."
  2. Hackett's foremost disciple was Gustav A. Hemwall, M.D., an Illinois physician. Between 1955 and 1996, when he retired, he was the leading Prolotherapy instructor and clinician in the United States. He treated more 10,000 patients. In 1974, he reported the results of a clinical survey of 2,007 patients and revealed that 75.5% of the patient considered themselves recovered and cured of chronic pain, 24.3% as generally improved, and only 0.2% as not improved.
  3. One of Dr. Hemwall's patients was C. Everett Koop, M.D., who later became the Surgeon General of the United States. Koop went to Hemwall for treatment of persistent back and leg pain and was healed after a few treatments. Koop, a pediatric surgeon, was so impressed that he learned the technique himself and offered it to the parents of his patients who he saw suffered from pain.


Why does it work?
In laboratory experiments, Dr. Hackett found that his technique stimulated the growth of ligament and tendon tissue and was especially effective at reinforcing the "weld" of these structures to the bone. prolotherapy injections are made at the site of so-called fibro-osseous junctions, that is, points in the body where ligaments and tendons adhere to bones.

  • Ligaments and tendons are bands of tough, fibrous connective tissue that link structures in your musculoskeletal system and basically enable you to move. Ligaments connect bones, providing stability to joints and prevent and preventing overextension. Tendons attach muscles to bones, and thus transmit "muscles power" to bones.
  • Strains and sprains, overuse injuries, and microtrauma from repeated stress and damage ligaments and tendons. Often they do not heal completely because of poor blood supply in ligament and tendon tissue that prevents immune cells and other healing agents from reaching the area. Incomplete repair leads to a loss of tissue strength.
  • A slow deterioration of ligaments and other structural tissues can also result from underfunctioning or degeneration of internal organs and glands, poor circulation, nerve impingement due to joint misalignments, and blocked channels (meridians) of energy.
  • Any of these scenarios can undermine the normally tough, taut ligaments and tendons. They become relaxed and weak, allowing too much movement of joints, and thus become potential generators for prolonged pain.
  • Nerves become irritated, resulting in both local pain and so-called referred pain, that is, pain felt elsewhere in the body. Joints that are too loose may pinch nerves or blood vessels and create additional damage. Muscles in the vicinity of weakened ligament and tendons tighten to help stabilize suddenly destabilized joints. Moreover, the fibro-osseous junctions have high concentrations of nerves and if there is damage in the area, you will feel it. In fact, the periosteum (outer layer of bones), ligaments and tendons are regarded as the most pain-sensitive areas of the body.
  • Prolotherapy injections permanently strengthen these vulnerable and sensitive tissues, and in the process, reduces and often eliminates the pain right at the source.
  • Prolotherapy cause growth of new, normal tissue. The method stimulates ligament and tendon growth.Initially, Dr. Hackett injected animals and found that one to three injections caused a 40% increase in the diameter of tendons - a near doubling of tendon strength. Later studies by other researchers supported his findings. They included these results:
  • Within six weeks, the inside knee ligament of injected rabbits increased by 44% in mass and 27% in thickness compared to non-injected animals. The fibro-osseous junction increased in strength by 28%. (YK Liu, Connective Tissue Research, 1983).
  • Tendon girth increased an average of 20 to 25 percent in injected rabbit knee and Achilles tissue after six weeks. Injections appear to mimic the early stages of the body's normal injury repair mechanisms by promoting the activity of certain immune cells involved in the healing process. (JA Maynard, Journal of Orthopedic Research, 1985).
  • Prolotherapy causes a regrowth of tissue, an increase in the number of fibroblasts (connective tissue cells), and an increase in collagen, the structural protein that forms tendons, ligaments, and cartilage, and is responsible for the strength of these tissues. (T Dorman, Journal of Orthopedic Medicine, 1994).

Can Prolotherapy Help Your Pain?
Many kinds of chronic pain are triggered by weakened and damaged structural tissue involving ligaments, tendons, muscles, and joints. Prolotherapy specifically addresses these problems.

Back Pain :  This is the single most expensive health care problem and the most common cause of disability for people under 45.

Very frequently, back pain occurs as a result of injury or degeneration of the ligaments in the back, such as the sacroiliac ligament or the ring of ligaments holding vertebral disc in place. Low back problems, resulting from weakened ligaments, can cause debilitating local pain as well as sciatic pain in the legs and other lower extremity discomfort.

In a 1956 medical journal article, Dr. Hackett reported on a series of 124 patients with low back pain disability, half of whom had previously undergone unsuccessful back surgery. Prolotherapy for these patients produced an 80 percent cure rate.

In a 1991 study on chronic low back pain among individuals unresponsive to other treatments, Robert Schwartz, M.D., reported that 40 out of 43 patients experienced pain relief after six weeks of Prolotherapy treatment. Already after two weeks of treatment, he said, 35 patients reported two-thirds less pain than before, and 20 of them said the pain was 95 percent improved (Journal of Neurology, Orthopedic Medicine, and Surgery, 1991).
Harold Wilkinson, M.D., a neurosurgeon at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, found that just a single Prolotherapy injection was enough to give significant relief to patients with chronic low back pain referred to him after failed back surgery. He reported that one injection have significant relief to 76 percent of 349 patients, including 29 percent with total relief.

HEADACHES, TMJ AND NECK PAIN
Undiagnosed ligament abnormalities in the head and neck cause many chronic headaches, neck aches, and oral pains. If the primary cause of the migraine is ligament or tendon injury in the neck, total elimination of pain can be expected in a high percentage of cases.

In a 1963 issue of the medical journal Headache, Daniel Kayfetz, M.D., reported that Prolotherapy gave relief to 86 percent of 189 patients who developed chronic head and body pains after whiplash injury. 60 percent of the patients had full relief of pain.

Headaches and neck pain may also stem from temporomandibular joint problem, the junction just in front of the lower part of the your ear where the temporal bone of your skull attaches to your jaw, or mandible. Poorly fitting braces, poor dental work, and trauma can cause a problem in the TMJ - and lots of pain. When you open and close your mouth, a popping or clicking sound in the joint indicates a TMJ problem. Injecting the affected ligament effectively relieves pain.

KNEE PAIN
Ligament and tendon injury and weakness are primary causes of pain that develop in the knee and often lead to crippling arthritis. Four ligaments are critical to the stability of the knee joint. They are the anterior (ACL) and posterior cruciate ligaments (PCL), and the medial (MCL) and lateral collateral ligaments (LCL). The ACL is the most frequently injured ligament of the knee, and a cause of considerable instability, pain, further damage, and eventual arthritis. Most ligament injuries involve partial tears of the ligament tissue, which can be substantially helped by Prolotherapy. A complete tear of a ligament requires surgery.

Kenneth D. Reeves, M.D., a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist at the Kansas City Bethany Medical Center, found that Prolotherapy treatments for patients with painful arthritis of the knee produced significant improvement. Injections were given periodically over a three-year period. At the end of the experiment period, the researchers found that pain at rest, with walking, and with stair use have improved by 45, 43 and 35 percent respectively (Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, 2003).

"REFERRED PAIN "
This is a tricky problem that is unfamiliar to most health practitioners. A "referred pain" means that an injury to a ligament in one part of the body transmits pain to another part of the body. For instance, weakened hip ligaments can refer pain to the big toe. A sacroiliac ligament problem in the low back can send pain down the leg to the side of the foot, resulting often in misdiagnosis of "sciatica." This phenomenon was first described many years ago by Dr. Hackett, who mapped out referral patterns of ligaments in the hip, pelvis, lower back, and neck.

Prolotherapy Helps Many Conditions

OSTEOARTHRITIS:  This is the common wear-and-tear-arthritis, and it often occurs because weak ligaments cause joints to operate in an uneven fashion that leads to cartilage damage.

SHOULDER PROBLEMS:  Shoulder dislocations, rotator cuff tears, and age-related degeneration.

REPETITIVE STRAIN INJURIES (RSIs):  Pain in hands, wrists, and elbows is commonly caused by repeatedly performing the same manual tasks each day, Golfer's or tennis elbow, and even Carpal Tunnel pain, may often be misdiagnosed damage to the annular ligament that attaches the radius bone to the ulnar bone adjacent to the elbow, and facilitates the rotational movement of the hand.

HIP , KNEE , ANKLE SPRAINS AND FOOT PAIN including Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, and even bunions caused by ligament laxity.

FRIBROMYALGIA:  Interestingly, many of the 18 so-called "tender points" associated with fibromyalgia are located at the site of tendon and ligament insertions, and thus respond superbly to Prolotherapy treatment.

SPORTS INJURIES involving tendons, ligaments, and muscles. Prolotherapy promotes healing and earlier return to activity.