This morning I was scheduled for the second treatment on both my left shoulder and left upper back, basically the top four ribs. Although some doctors say the average treatment is between 3 and 6 prolotherapy treatments a month apart, my doctor says he has never had to do more than 3 on any one area. Perhaps, he says, that other doctors have patients with more complicated injuries or perhaps he does more injections each time. He does not know, but I liked hearing it.
Today instead of the standard prolotherapy in which the injections are given into the ligament, right at the bone, we tried a new technique. This form of prolotherapy injects a weaker glucose solution into the nerves in the area. Nerves not only convey pain impulses, but also feed the muscles and ligaments. You can read more about the idea and philosophy behind treating the nerves in this article on Subcutaneous Prolotherapy.
So compared to standard prolotherapy the treatment was vastly less painful. Traditional prolotherapy uses large needles to inject the irritant into the ligament right at the bone. Even with the lidacain to numb the area, the injections themselves can be fairly painful. Definitely worth the pain, but painful nevertheless.
The subcutaneous prolotherapy uses short small needles to inject the nerves which are just under the skin. Also the idea is to take away the pain immediately. By injecting the nerves, he doctor is both numbing and curing the damaged areas. In fact the doctor would not let me leave until we identified any areas of pain and he ahd a chance to treat those areas again. when I left, I was without pain in the shoulder and upper left back, and I ahd about 30-40 tiny bandaids over the needle spots.