Growth hormone has gotten a bad reputation because of its overuse by athletes and bodybuilders who take it in doses a hundred times more than the body requires. After the age of thirty, GH declines more sharply than other hormones and is even lower in obese individuals. It is not a magic bullet. You must exercise, eat right, get good sleep and balance your other hormones before considering GH replacement.
I.V. NUTRITIONAL SUPPORT
When a patient is very ill or going into surgery, they may be facing many serious issues. Some of these are malnourishment/malabsorbtion, dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, etc. The body has a wonderful ability to heal itself and there have been numerous studies supporting the fact that we can improve the healing process with intravenous nutrition. IV nutrition allows us to administer needed fluids, vitamins, minerals, and other needed nutrients directly to your blood supply. Your blood stream can now efficiently get what is needed to the tissues and basically jumpstart your healing process. IV nutrition allows us to bypass your digestive tract, which in most people is dysfunctional and not absorbing nutrients as well as it should. IV nutrition also allows us to increase your tissue oxygen concentrations, stimulate the immune system and even aide in the removal of toxic substances and free radicals from your body.
Prolotherapy is a unique method used to treat chronic pain that has been around for many years and is well proven. It is defined by Webster’s New Collegiate dictionary as “the rehabilitation of an incompetent structure, such as ligaments or tendons, by the induced proliferation of new cells.” Pain can 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 rebuilt and strengthened.
Here is a list of the many things that can be treated with Prolotherapy:
- Headaches and TMJ pain often associated with car accidents.
- Low back pain from lifting or work-related injuries.
- Overuse injuries such as tennis elbow or shoulder tendonitis.
- Muscle pain from fibromyalgia and other similar conditions.
- Joint pain from arthritis.
- Degenerative conditions of the spine.
- Athletic injuries that have never healed.
- Chronically weak and unstable shoulder, elbow, wrist, knee, and ankle joints from injury to supporting ligaments.
These constitute soft tissue injuries and can become chronically painful. Normally, these injured tendons and ligaments go through a repair and healing process which takes about four to six weeks. But, what happens when they just will not get better? Anti-inflammatory drugs are often given to treat these injuries, but they may actually slow or stop this healing process.
When rest and pain medications fail, other types of treatment are necessary. One of the most common means of treating these kinds of injuries is a specific flexibility and strengthening program, tailored to the individual and the areas of weakness. Another effective treatment is deep tissue therapy by a certified muscle therapist.
However, in a significant number of cases, despite a well-conceived rehabilitation program and consistent effort from the individual, residual pain and dysfunction may persist. Other types of treatment such as chiropractic care, massage therapy and acupuncture treatments may only give temporary relief. 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”. That news is frustrating and discouraging!
Prolotherapy Spells R E L I E F
Although you may not have heard about prolotherapy, it has been around for more than sixty years and treatment results have been amazing. Up to 85-90% of patients have received good to excellent results when assessing their pain relief and improved function. Just as importantly, pain medications can be greatly reduced or even eliminated. But, the best part of all is prolotherapy produces long-lasting relief, naturally. Most other types of treatment provide only temporary relief, while prolotherapy gives long-term relief, and can be an alternative to surgery in many cases. 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.
How Does Prolotherapy Work?
Prolotherapy works on a very simple principle: injecting the prolotherapy solution at the sites of pain and weakness stimulates the body’s own natural healing mechanism to repair and rebuild injured tissue into a stronger, more supportive, less painful tissue than it was before.
When injuries to the connective tissues (ligaments and tendons) occur, the normal healing process may be incomplete. This incomplete healing process is revealed under microscope by a deficiency of connective tissue cells called fibroblasts. These loose and weakened ligaments lack normal cellularity and therefore have less strength. As a result, the normal supportive function of the ligaments which was present prior to injury is lost. Joint stability is thereby reduced.
Small pain fibers in these weak ligaments transmit pain impulses to the brain. Through an unconscious reflex, the surrounding muscles go into a tight and painful spasm in an attempt to stabilize the joint. This causes the region to feel tight, stiff, achy, burning, tingling, numb, fatigued and painful. The individual will often notice painful knots in the affected muscles. These muscle spasms reduce blood flow, causing even more pain. Not only are these symptoms local, but they are often referred (transmitted) through nerve pathways into the legs and feet, arms and hands, and result in headaches. In other words, pain felt in the arms or legs may be due to instability in the neck or back.
Medications and other forms of passive treatment such as ultrasound, ice, heat, massage, acupuncture and manipulation may give minimal lasting benefits because the primary problem is not being addressed – the loose and injured ligaments. Stretching and strengthening exercises usually can provide some relief from chronic pain, but this is often only temporary. When these exercises have failed to increase the support sufficiently to diminish pain and improve function, the chronic pain cycle ensues. Prolotherapy should be initiated as soon as possible, before the problem becomes widespread.
The most basic prolotherapy solution contains a naturally-occurring sugar (dextrose) plus an anesthetic (lidocaine). Other natural substances can also be used effectively. The solution does not contain cortisone, which is known to decrease inflammation, but can also slow or stop the healing process. Acute pain may be relieved with cortisone, but repeated use causes a weakening of the tissues and chronic pain develops.
When the injured tissues are injected with small amounts of the prolotherapy solution, a reaction begins, starting a three-stage healing process (see Three Stages of Healing table).
Three Stages of Healing
1. Inflammation: Increased blood flow, swelling and pain. Cells are called in to remove damaged tissue. Occurs during 1st week.
2. Fibroblastic: Swelling and pain begin to subside, new blood vessels form. Cells begin to form new collagen. Starts at day 2 or 3 and continues for 4-6 weeks.
3. Maturation: New blood vessels mature, tissue is stronger and pain subsides. Collagen density and diameter increased. Continues from week 6 to 18 months after injury.
Prolotherapy initiates the first stage (inflammation). Stages two and three follow automatically. The body sends in special cells which help to clean up the debris, much like a cleanup crew at a construction site. These cells respond as if another injury has occurred resulting in a controlled inflammation. This process takes a week. The body then begins a process of repair and healing. This is accomplished by the addition of a unique cell called a fibroblast which is deficient in the injured tissue. Fibroblasts increase in number at the sites of injection and over the course of four to six weeks secrete a substance called collagen which is a very strong and relatively inelastic substance. The new collagen makes the ligaments thicker, denser and stronger, providing more support to the joints. The strength of the injected ligaments can increase up to 40% above normal. Stability is increased as pain and muscle spasm decrease. The newly formed tissue continues to mature for one and one-half years.
So, in essence, prolotherapy strengthens ligaments and decreases pain by stimulating the body’s own repair and healing mechanism to go into action. There is no masking of pain, tissues heal naturally and become stronger, without the formation of scar tissue. It is for this reason that prolotherapy gives long-lasting relief measured in months to years.
Unfortunately, since prolotherapy is considered by most insurance companies to be “investigational” and “alternative”, and is, therefore, not usually covered.
What About the Procedure Itself?
Prolotherapy is a very safe procedure when performed by a trained and highly skilled physician who has an in-depth knowledge of anatomy and experience using this injection technique.
The soreness following the injections is normal and gradually lessens over several days. Approved, prescribed drugs or plain Tylenol may be taken for pain. However, no anti-inflammatory drugs may be taken during the treatment period because these will interfere with the healing process that prolotherapy initiates. A goal of prolotherapy is to get the patient off all pain medications.
Can Prolotherapy Cure Everything?
Prolotherapy is not an overnight cure. It cannot cure every condition, nor always eliminate 100% of one’s pain. The results are excellent, considering that other treatments have not provided sustained relief from the pain. Combining other treatments, such as muscle therapy, physical therapy, oral supplements and exercise, further enhance results. It is also reassuring that prolotherapy only strengthens tissues. No structures are weakened and no scars are formed. Therefore, no bridges are burned.
A good history and a thorough examination is necessary to select the best candidates for prolotherapy. The motivation to want to get better and complete the necessary treatments is vital. Patience and time are important to reap benefits from prolotherapy. Chronic pain problems do not occur overnight and they do not heal that way either. Individuals who smoke, drink excessively, have unhealthy lifestyles or poor fitness, are obese, have underlying diseases or are under stress may have poorer healing, which can decrease the effectiveness of treatment. The goals of prolotherapy are to decrease pain and to improve the patient’s overall ability to function at work, at home, and during usual activities.
It works by stimulating the body’s own healing process at the sites of injection. Healing occurs slowly but surely, and naturally. Multiple treatments are usually necessary to achieve maximum joint stability and long-lasting relief from pain.
Platelet Rich Plasma treatments:
Although PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) Therapy has been around since the mid-1990s many people are still unaware of this beneficial treatment.
Basically, a PRP injection delivers a high concentration of endogenous (your own “home-grown”) platelets to an area of injury. (your own blood is drawn and then placed in a special centrifuge in order to get a high concentration of platelets in a small amount of fluid that will be injected into the site of tissue injury).
To understand the therapeutic value of PRP injections, you need to have a basic understanding of the make-up of blood. Blood is composed of plasma, red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. It’s these platelets that are the injury’s “first-responders” and help revascularize an injured area, construct new tissue, and stop the bleeding.
Because platelets play a significant role in the healing of tissue, reintroducing a high concentration of platelets directly into the injured area may enhance the healing process.
The physiological effects include:
• Increase tissue regeneration (tendon, ligament, soft tissue)
• Decrease inflammation
• Decrease pain
• Increase collagen (base component of connective tissue)
• Increase bone density
• Increase angiogenesis (development of new blood cells)
In the world of high-stakes sports, many stars swear by it. Tiger Woods received PRP injections in his left knee following surgery, and L.A. Dodger’s pitcher, Takashi Saito was able to return to the mound for the 2008 playoffs as a result of this little-known therapy.
Studies have seconded these testimonials. A recent study published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine (2006) reviewed the effectiveness of PRP therapy in patients with chronic elbow pain. Fifteen patients were treated with PRP therapy. The results documented a 60% improvement at eight weeks, 81% at six months, and 93% at final follow-up (12-38 months). There were no side effects or complications reported.
The Trouble with Tendons
Tendon injuries often become chronic because of the poor blood supply to these areas. Athletes and active people tend to have these issues and sometimes a whole career or hobby can be ruined by this ongoing complication. A PRP injection allows a quick and focused action to the area of injury, which allows it to heal more effectively and rapidly.
A patient’s blood is drawn and placed in a centrifuge which separates the platelet-rich plasma from the rest of the blood. This plasma is then injected into the area of injury. It’s a quick procedure with little, if any, downtime. It’s also safe because the platelets are derived from the patient’s own blood, so there is no risk of rejection or reaction. Not every patient is treated with PRP.
We do not treat every patient with PRP, most often, Dextrose Prolotherapy is used instead of PRP, because of the extra step in drawing your blood, the extra expense in purchasing the PRP kit, and extra time it takes to prepare the platelets. The injections are exactly the same way, but the proliferant, or solution injected is different. For many years doctors have had great success in healing many patients’ and having them avoid surgery with dextrose Prolotherapy.
Your decision to have PRP should be discussed with us to determine which type of Prolotherapy, (Dextrose, platelets, or another proliferant) is best for you.
Being overweight is a huge problem in our society. Obesity is an epidemic. Many concerns impact an individuals ability to control their weight. Certainly, stress is a huge factor. Chronic stress leads to adrenal problems with abnormal cortisol levels and subsequent weight gain. Stress leads to binge eating and subsequent weight gain. Stress leads to a sedentary life style with subsequent weight gain. Therefore, dealing with underlying stress is of utmost concern. It is then important to deal with adrenal dysfunction and consequent endocrine.
Therefore dealing with stress is of utmost importance. It is then important to deal with adrenal disfunction and the resulting endocrine imbalances that develop concerning the pancreas, the thyroid and sex glands. When hormones are imbalanced metabolism slows, sugar converts to fat instead of energy and depression sets in compounding the problem! When people become depressed they often eat and gain weight.
With these concerns people often resort to caffeine to stay awake, starvation to lose weight, and medications to fight the pain. These further dysregulate the metabolism slowing the metabolism as the body tries to store energy, as fat, for survival. This leads to insulin resistance with abnormal sugar levels that feed yeast. Imbalances can occur resulting in Candidiasis. The candida produce an aldehyde which causes leaky gut. Leaky gut leads to food Allergies. Food allergies further interfere with thermogenesis making it almost impossible to lose weight.
Do you see yourself anywhere in this maze?
Are you looking for a new approach to treatment for obesity, diabetes, poor circulation, stroke, high blood pressure or high cholesterol?Have you been exposed to environmental pollutants? It is believed that your fat cells protect your body from heavy metals, which we are often exposed to through the environment. If you do not do proper detoxification while undergoing weight loss, most people feel tired and ill. This is felt to be due to the release of toxins, usually heavy metals. The body then hits a plateau, protecting you from further release of these toxins. This is quite frustrating to most people. In our experience we have found chelation treatments, combined with a rational and healthy meal plan/exercise/and supplements, to provide a valuable therapy for these conditions and much more.
Doctors throughout the country use chelation therapy to treat clogged arteries that lead to chest pain and poor circulation. Essentially, a chelation product is administered either orally or intravenously and travels throughout the bloodstream removing toxic heavy metals and also neutralizes free radicals. By neutralizing free radicals chelation therapy also acts like a very powerful antioxidant protecting our tissue and organs. Free radical damage is linked to degenerative diseases including cardiovascular disease, cancer, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, arthritis and more. In neutralizing the free radicals and removing damaging heavy metals, chelation therapy can have a profound effect on your health status.
There are many, many stories of incredible successes. Many patients have experienced a decrease in heart symptoms, leg and foot pain from diabetes complications, and improved memory and energy. People who could never lose weight are often now able to lose weight. Don’t hesitate to investigate this amazing therapy.