Alternative Treatments for Chronic Pain
Conventional treatments include opioids and anti-inflammatories, steroid injections, and nerve blocks. These are aimed at managing pain. Opioid addiction is one of the leading causes of death. Steroid injections further weaken the joint it is injected into and offer short term relief. We offer alternative treatments for chronic pain that are safe and effective.
Cupping Therapy and Acupuncture Treatment
These therapies have been used for thousands of years and are long known to be effective at managing pain, improving nervous system function and balancing the immune system. It also improves digestion and stamina. Acupuncture treats the nerves that cause the muscles to spasm. Cupping releases stagnation which increases circulation in the soft tissue. Both therapies have been around for 5,000 years originating in China. The ancient practice of acupuncture started in China approximately 3000 years ago.8 The first documentation of acupuncture that described it as an organized system of diagnosis and treatment is in The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine, which dates back to 100 BCE. By this time, the Qi (vital energy or life force) flow channels were well established, and the information likely stemmed from a compilation of traditions passed down over centuries.9 Studies conducted on both humans and animals suggest that acupuncture may strengthen the immune system during chemotherapy and can reduce the side effects of nausea and vomiting. . Other studies have examined the role of acupuncture in stimulating immune function, including increasing white blood cell count and improving lymphocyte and natural killer cell activity.NIH-funded research indicates acupuncture as effective in treating migraines, arthritis, and chronic pain. The study, which involved data on nearly 18 000 patients, revealed that acupuncture is more effective than standard care and sham treatments.
Chronic pain is debilitating to one’s quality of life.
We offer Prolotherapy, Amnio, and stem cell injections. We evaluate each patient to see how advanced the arthritis is to determine which therapy will be most effective. These treatments serve to build and strengthen the integrity of the joint. This results in a dramatic and long-lasting decrease in pain.
Prolotherapy (Proliferative Therapy)
Prolotherapy is gaining more and more acceptance and is a sought out treatment for musculoskeletal pain. The therapy involves a series of injections designed to increase the inflammatory process that brings about healing. Prolotherapy is indicated in joint pain due to laxity of ligaments and tendons. This is when the ligaments and tendons lack the strength and integrity to support the joint. Prolo is not indicated in spinal stenoses or arthritis. However, patients with arthritis experience improvement because the joint is stronger due to the injections. Ligaments and tendons have a poor blood supply and therefore poor healing response. The inflammatory process is used by the body to transport proteins and enzymes to rebuild the tissue. Prolotherapy increases the blood flow to the area of injury and stimulates inflammation, thereby bringing about the healing process A double blind placebo controlled study published in Alternative Therapies in Health & Medicine (March 6, 2000) reported significant reductions in knee pain, swelling and knee buckling frequency after 6 injections. More and more physicians including osteopathic, medical, and naturopathic physicians are getting trained in the valuable modality. Prolotherapy is a viable alternative to expensive MRI’s and surgeries. It is a safe treatment that has very few minor side effects and far less recovery time.
Stem cell and Amnio Injections, Non-Surgical Ligament and Tendon Reconstruction
Stem cell injections are a safe and effective alternative to having joint replacement or tendon/ligament repair surgeries. There is a 7 year post injection study for knee osteoarthritis that showed the soft tissue to still be in tact after just one injection of umbilical cord stem cells. The prognosis of a ligament or tendon repair is dependant on the health of the overall joint because it only repairs the torn tissue. However, with just one stem cell injection, the whole joint benefits. Lax ligaments become tighter and inflammation from arthritis is reduced significantly. Arthritis and the build up of scar tissue commonly develops over time after the first surgery leading to a second surgery down the line. It’s better to facilitate the joint’s own healing properties than to create more scar tissue. Patients can get back to normal activity, there is no recovery time. However we recommend physical therapy for a few weeks following the injection to optimize the outcome.
Stem cell injections are used for degenerative disc disorders of the spine, hip arthritis, knee pain and shoulder pain. Stem cells offer high amounts of cytokines and growth factors that respond to injured tissue. It assists the body in its own healing and repair process, so it is noninvasive with no risk. The main benefit of stem cells and their cytokines and growth factors is the anti-inflammatory effects and the promotion of healing and repair of the joint. With many joint and spine conditions, especially arthritis, the prognosis is similar if not better to having surgery without the risk of complications such as life threatening blood clots and possible life long nerve pain.
To schedule a complimentary consultation for a Stem Cell or Amnio joint injection or IV, call 480-334-8278 or fill out our appointment request.