By Clara Cole,2014-05-04 02:16
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    Odom Sports Medicine


    John Odom, MD MPH

    Prolotherapy is a safe, non-surgical treatment for chronic pain using injections to stimulate healing. It has been used for decades on patients in pain from aging, overuse or injury. It is defined by Webster’s

    Third New International Dictionary as “the rehabilitation of an incompetent structure, such as ligaments or tendons, by the induced proliferation of new cells.” Pain from auto accidents, athletic injuries, and overuse injuries often arise from injury to the soft tissues in the body. These soft tissues which include ligaments, muscles, tendons and joint capsules are also called “connective tissues” because they connect to bones, thereby supporting the bony skeleton. Prolotherapy causes these connections to be repaired, rebuilt and strengthened. It is for this reason that prolotherapy has also been called ligament reconstructive therapy or stimulated ligament repair.


? Whiplash Injury to the Neck, Upper Back, Shoulders and Low Back

    ; Tension and Migraine Headaches

    ; TMJ Syndrome

    ; Low Back Pain from Lifting or Work-Related Injuries

    ; Postural Strain of the Neck and Back

    ; Overuse Injuries such as Tennis Elbow, Shoulder Tendonitis, Achilles tendonitis and Carpal Tunnel


    ; Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain

    ; Sacroiliac Joint Disorders

    ; Muscle Tightness, Strain and Spasm

    ; Arthritis Pain-Knee, Hands, Neck and Back

    ; Herniated and Degenerative Discs

    ; Pinched Nerves and Sciatica

    ; Weak, Loose, and Unstable Joints (Hypermobility/Subluxations/Dislocations)

    ; Athletic Injuries, New and Old

    These represent soft tissue injuries, which can often become chronically painful. Normally, these injured muscles, tendons, and ligaments go through a repair and healing process, which takes about four to six weeks. But, what happens when the low back pain, neck pain, and headaches from a whiplash injury just will not bet better? Or, the athletic injury that continues to cause nagging pain and is preventing you from staying active, especially keeping you from the sport you enjoy the most? What about the pain where you cannot pinpoint a specific injury, but think it may be due to some repetitive tasks at work, or from overdoing it while working around the houses. Anti-inflammatories and medications are often given to treat these injuries, but they may actually slow or stop this

    healing process.

When rest and pain medications fail, and usually they do

    because they only mask or cover up the underlying

    problem, other types of treatment is often tried. One

    method of treating these kinds of injuries is a specific

    flexibility and strengthening program, tailored to the

    individual and the areas of weakness. A physical therapist

    can administer therapeutic treatment, teach an exercise

    program, and provide the education to the individual to

    allow them to follow their program at home, giving them

    independence in their recovery.

    Another type of treatment is manual therapy, in which a therapist uses his hands to break up or release adhesions, muscle spasms and restricted fascia (connective tissue). Acupuncture may only give temporary relief. In a significant number of cases, despite a reasonable treatment plan and consistent effort from the individual, residual pain and dysfunction may persist. Chronic pain is often quite disabling and may affect job performance, recreational activities and activities of daily living. Along the way a doctor may state that “you just have to live with it…there is nothing you can do about it” or say that surgery is the

    only option. That news is frustrating and discouraging.


    Although you may not have heard about prolotherapy until now, it has been used to treat pain and injuries for more than sixty years and the results have been amazing. In studies conducted on pain patients ,up to 85-90% of patients receive good-to-excellent results in pain relief and improved function. We are finding similar statistics in our practice as well. Also, the use of pain medications can be greatly reduced or even eliminated after treatment. This is good news, because pain medications can be costly and have potentially serious side effects with chronic use. But, the best part of all is that prolotherapy produces long-lasting relief through stimulating the body’s natural healing response. Most other types of treatment provide only temporary relief. Prolotherapy is an alternative to surgery in many cases, thereby avoiding dysfunctional scar tissue and lengthy rehabilitation. George Hackett, M.D., a prolotherapy pioneer, proved that strengthening connective tissue relieves soft tissue pain and a research study in the respected medical journal, Lancet, demonstrated the effectiveness of prolotherapy.

     Before Prolotherapy After Prolotherapy