Rocky Mountain Pain Solutions is excited to be able to offer regenerative medicine. Dr. Brown has attended several courses throughout the past few years, giving you more options for treatment to decrease your pain. He has spent several hundred hours learning about these techniques and is very excited to offer this treatment that can help your body heal and repair the cause of your chronic pain, and not just use medications and steroid injections to temporarily relieve it. Please call 303-456-8868 to schedule a consult with Dr. Brown to see what options would be best for you!
Regenerative injections aim to stimulate the body to repair itself in areas of degeneration. They include Prolotherapy, PRP and Stem Cell injections, and they aim to induce a healing response in the body. These injections are a safe, non-surgical treatment for chronic injuries, pain and arthritis, using injections to stimulate healing and repair. They have been used for decades on patients in pain from aging, overuse or injury. Prolotherapy 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, the aging process and overuse, often arises from damage to the joints and connective tissues in the body. If the structures do not heal properly, chronic degeneration and accelerated aging will occur. Proper treatment will stimulate the body’s healing response to repair, rebuild and strengthen the area.
COMMON CONDITIONS TREATED:
Arthritis, Instability, Whiplash, Disc Disease
Arthritis, Instability, Rib Dysfunction
Arthritis, Instability, Disc Disease
Spondylosis, Pain after surgery
Osteitis Pubis, Instability, Sports Hernia
Instability, Recurrent Subluxations
Arthritis of GH Joint or AC joint
SLAP Injuries (Labral tears)
Tennis Elbow (lateral Epicondylosis)
Golfers Elbow (Medial Epicondylosis)
Thumb Arthritis and Instability
Carpal Bone Instability
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Pelvis Tendonosis and Pain
Hip Stabilizing Muscles/Tendons
Chronic IT Band Tendonosis
Chronic Hamstring Strains/Tears
Ligament Instability and Tears
Peripheral Meniscal Tears
Runner’s knee (tendonosis)
Pes Anserine Tendonosis
Sinus Tarsi Syndrome
These represent conditions which can often lead to chronic pain. Normally injured joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments go through a repair and healing process, which takes about four to six weeks. What happens when low back pain, neck pain, and headaches from a whiplash injury don’t heal, or the athletic injury that continues to cause nagging pain is preventing the athlete from staying competitive? Joint pain and arthritis can slow one down and take away the ability to exercise and enjoy life. Anti- inflammatory and pain medications or steroid injections are often given to treat these injuries, but they may actually slow or stop this healing process. Surgical options should be a last resort for chronic pain and arthritic conditions due to side effects and failure rates.
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. It leads to loss of productivity, depression and fatigue which feeds the chronic pain cycle.
These injection techniques have been used to treat pain and injuries for more than sixty years, and the results have been consistent and positive. With the advancement in technology and science PRP and Stem Cell injections and changing the way we treat orthopedic conditions. In several studies conducted on pain patients, up to 90% of patients received good-to excellent results in pain relief and improved function. Also, the use of pain medications can be greatly reduced or even stopped after treatment, decreasing the patient’s healthcare costs and risks associated with pain medication use. Treatment produces long-lasting relief through stimulating the body’s natural healing response. Most other types of treatment provide only temporary relief by covering up the symptoms and not treating the cause. Surgery is often not needed if the area is treated appropriately by an experienced physician. Multiple encouraging studies have been published since the Prolotherapy pioneer George Hackett, M.D., proved that strengthening damaged tissue relieves pain. Every year new and encouraging studies with Prolotherapy, PRP and Stem Cell injections confirm what we see in our patients every day. This is the future of Orthopedic Medicine!
HOW DOES IT WORK?
When injuries occur, the area may not heal completely due to lack of proper treatment or poor blood supply. For this reason, ligaments, joints and tendons heal very slowly. If left untreated, damaged ligaments become loose, allowing bones in the joint to shift with excessive movement causing pain, muscle spasms, and eventually arthritis. Arthritis occurs in the joints and spine as a result of instability in the structures supporting them. We can intervene by stabilizing the structures and decrease the progression of pain, degeneration and aging.
When stretched, small nerve fibers in the damaged ligaments transmit pain impulses to the brain. Through a subconscious reflex, the surrounding muscles go into a 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 surrounding muscles. These muscles become tight and painful as they try to compensate for the weak and damaged underlying structures. Spasm in the muscles decreases the blood flow and nutrient delivery to the tissue, further contributing to the breakdown. Also, the chronic tension from the muscles in spasm leads to deterioration of the tendon attachments leading to tendonosis (degeneration without inflammation). Not only is pain felt locally, but is often referred to other areas.
Injecting a stimulating solution at the sites of the tissue breakdown stimulates the body’s own healing mechanism to repair and rebuild. This regenerative process leads to a stronger and more supportive structure.
THE THREE STAGES OF HEALING
When the injured areas are injected, a reaction begins, starting a three-stage healing process (see table above). The injections initiate the first stage (Inflammation). Stages two (Fibroblastic) and three (Maturation) will follow automatically. In stage one, the body sends in macrophage cells, which help to clean up the debris and damaged areas. These cells respond as if another injury has occurred, resulting in controlled inflammation and increased blood flow. This process takes about a week. In stage two, the body begins the process of repair and healing. Repair cells called fibroblasts, which are deficient in the injured and degenerated tissue, arrive to the scene during this stage. Fibroblasts increase in number at the sites of injection over the course of four to six weeks, and secrete a substance called collagen, which is a very strong and relatively inelastic substance. This newly formed collagen makes the ligaments thicker, denser and stronger, providing more support to the joints where the ligaments anchor or attach to bone. Studies have shown that the strength of the injected ligaments can increase up to 40% above normal. Pain and muscle spasm is decreased as stability is increased. In stage three, the newly formed tissue continues to mature for one to three years. Improvement, therefore, may continue for up to three years after the last treatment. If, during the three stages of the healing process, anti-inflammatory drugs, ice, and/or immobilization are used to reduce pain and inflammation, complete and normal healing will be inhibited. Most people are taught that inflammation is bad and don’t realize that, without inflammation, no healing will occur.
We can strengthen the joints, ligaments and tendons and decreases the pain by stimulating the body’s own repair and healing process. There is no covering up the pain as tissues heal naturally and become stronger, without forming scar tissue. Several treatments spaced apart by about two to six weeks are usually required to get the full benefit. Each treatment builds on the previous until the desired outcome is obtained.