Prolotherapy Solutions – What is in the Prolotherapy Injections?
Ingredients in Prolotherapy solutions
The primary proliferant in Hackett-Hemwall dextrose Prolotherapy solutions used at Caring Medical is dextrose, a corn extract. Why would a hypertonic dextrose solution help an injury to heal? When a body area becomes injured, the cells in that area burst and release dextrose and trigger an influx of inflammatory cells, initiating the wound-healing cascade to the specific area. Dextrose, an osmotic proliferant is water soluble and very safe. Being water-soluble means that whatever the body does not need is excreted out in the urine and is not stored in the fatty tissue of the body.
In the basic Prolotherapy solutions, we also use an alkaline extract of the pitcher plant called Sarapin. Almost all pain issues have some kind of nerve component, which Sarapin helps to relieve. The exact mechanism of how Sarapin relieves pain is unknown but is felt to be due to the ammonium sulfate concentrate in the extract of the plant. It is plausible that this ammonium sulfate compound, or some yet unidentifiable biological agent in the pitcher plant, causes a gentle irritation which adds to the proliferant effect of the solution when Sarapin is added. In our experience, Sarapin enhances the healing effects of injection treatments and has an excellent safety profile. It is one of the few materials found in the Physicians’ Desk Reference that has no known side effect. Also in the basic solution, to help ease the pain of the injection procedure, as well as provide pain relief to the area, procaine or lidocaine is added in very small quantities. Often, this helps to ease the pain right away after the procedure, but is used in such a small amount to not cause any adverse effect to the joint repair/wound healing cascade.
Prolotherapy solution additives
When a stronger inflammatory reaction is desired, additional natural ingredients can be used in the dextrose-based injections. These can include mineral additives, such as zinc or manganese. Another common Prolotherapy additive includes fatty acids, which increase the inflammatory effect. Lastly, certain hormones, including human growth hormone or testosterone, can be helpful for triggering localized repair of damaged tissue.
As regenerative medicine advances, Prolotherapy doctors are taking notice of which methods can be incorporated into dextrose Prolotherapy treatments to help direct a person’s own stem cells and/or growth factors into the exact places where healing needs to take place within a joint.
This is called Autologous Prolotherapy, or Cellular Prolotherapy. In our office, we utilize Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Prolotherapy, which involves concentrating platelets/growth factors found in the blood and injecting them directly into the joint. We also offer Stem Cell Prolotherapy using a person’s own bone marrow and/or fat cells, which are collected and injected during the same day procedure. With any Cellular Prolotherapy procedure done in our office, patients also receive dextrose Prolotherapy to the surrounding joint attachments, in order to ensure the area of pain and instability is comprehensively treated.
Which Prolotherapy solution is right for me?
Good question! This is one component of the New Patient consultation. Doing Prolotherapy full time, in its many facets, our Prolotherapy specialists have an excellent knowledge of what conditions typically respond best and quickest to which solutions.
Furthermore, it has been our experience that the solutions are important, but more important is the Prolotherapy technique. When we think of Prolotherapy as spot welding for the body, it is understandable why we believe so strongly in the comprehensive Hackett-Hemwall dextrose Prolotherapy technique. This method utilizes multiple injections into and around the joint, not just one or two injections into the joint, but around the joint to stabilize the ligaments and tendon attachments as well. We have found that when helping chronic, tough pain cases, the problem area is generally more diffuse than what can be covered in a couple injections.