Pros and Cons of Corticosteroid Injection Versus Prolotherapy
Prolotherapy can help naturally stimulate the body’s ability to heal itself, offering the potential for pain relief without surgery or chemicals.
The business of living is hard on the body. Sedentary lifestyles (such as working in front of a computer) can cause your muscles to atrophy. Repetitive movements (like typing) can lead to inflammation and arthritis. High-intensity workouts (think basketball, CrossFit, kickboxing, and cycling) can strain, stress, and damage your muscles, ligaments, and tendons.
The resulting pain can range from nagging to debilitating – putting a serious damper on your quality of life.
Prolothrapy Can Promote Natural Pain Relief
A 2011 study evaluated the effectiveness of using prolotherapy to treat those suffering from unresolved foot and toe pain. The study found that, “100% had improvements of their pain and stiffness. Eighty-four percent experienced 50% or more pain relief.”
A 2012 study looked at the effectiveness of prolotherapy in treating symptomatic knee osteoarthritis (KOA). Adults with at least 3 months of symptomatic KOA were recruited from clinical and community settings to participate in the study. All participants were found to have progressively improved over a 52-week period.
What About Corticosteroid Injections? Aren’t They Effective?
Corticosteroid injections can be very effective at relieving symptoms, at least in the short term. These shots are a steroid engineered in a lab that’s commonly injected into joints along with a local anesthetic.
Because of the high risks associated with Corticosteroid injections, patients can only receive a limited number a year. It’s also worth noting, the larger the dose and the more repeated the use, the greater the potential for side effects.
Risks Associated with Corticosteroid Injections
Pain is there for a reason. It tells your body when to step and rest. Because a Corticosteroid injection helps mask the pain with temporary relief, patients can often press beyond what their body should be enduring, causing even more damage.
These risks include:
- Damage to the Cartilage
- Death of the Nearby Bone
- Osteoporosis (thinning of the nearby bone)
- Infection of the Joint
- Damage to the Nerve
- Weakening of Rupture of the Tendon (commonly a result of overuse)
- Temporary Facial Flushing
- Temporary Flares of Pain and Inflammation
- Temporary Increase in Blood Sugar
- Thinning of the Skin and Soft Tissue (near the injection side)
- Lightening of the Skin (near the injection site)
Prolotheapy’s Effectiveness is Based on the Body’s Innate Ability to Heal
What is prolotherapy? Prolotherapy offers a non-invasive alternative to traditional pain management, such as surgery and toxic painkillers. Earliest reports of this treatment date back to the 1830s.
Prolotherapy works by injecting a small irritant solution in the affected area helps trigger an internal healing response to help that specific part of the body. This allows you to take advantage of your body’s innate ability to heal itself.