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Prolotherapy: A Natural Way for Athletes to Heal

HomeWellnessProlotherapy: A Natural Way for Athletes to Heal

Prolotherapy goes by many names. You may hear it referred to as Regenerative Injection Therapy (RIT). It’s also known as ligament reconstructive therapy. If you’re one of the millions dealing with joint pain, prolotherapy can be incredibly beneficial.

As you likely know, joint pain can happen in many ways. You can suffer an instant sports injury, leaving you dealing with pain in and around your joints. Joint pain also comes from medical conditions such as arthritis and osteoarthritis.

Joint issues often cause mobility problems and significant pain. Fortunately, some people find relief from joint pain through prolotherapy. Here’s a closer look at this procedure, its benefits for athletes, and who it’s right for.

The Science Behind Prolotherapy

Your body is a connected system. You have joints in areas where two bones come together. Without your joints, you’d have minimal flexibility. But what makes a joint? Tendons and ligaments. Cartilage also exists between your joints, acting as a cushion between joints and bones.

Prolotherapy treatment treats your cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. The result is having stronger overall joints.

The Prolotherapy Process

Prolotherapy is a simple process to understand. This non-invasive medical process involves a medical professional injecting a simple solution at the site of your injured or otherwise damaged joints. What’s in this solution typically includes:

  • Dextrose: The irritant in a prolotherapy treatment. This irritant can help jumpstart your body’s natural healing processes.
  • Saline Solution: Serves as a medium to ease the injection of dextrose into the body

After a doctor administers the prolotherapy solution, you may notice a small amount of localized pain. That’s why certain medical professionals may use lidocaine or a similar solution mixed in with your shot to minimize pain during and after your injection. 

The Benefits of Prolotherapy for Athletes

Prolotherapy offers many benefits, especially if you’re an athlete. Here’s more information about what makes this form of treatment so beneficial.

  • No Risk of Habit-Forming Medication: A risk you can deal with post-surgery or while coping with joint pain is a potential reliance on pain medication. Pain medication can temporarily treat joint problems. Unfortunately, these medications can also become habit-forming.
  • Less Expensive Than Surgery: If you’re fortunate, a single, expensive surgery might solve your joint-related problems. Depending on the type and severity of your joint issues, you may require multiple surgeries, with no guarantee they’ll fully resolve your joint pain.
  • Improved Mobility: Understanding the relationship between prolotherapy and hypermobility is essential. Prolotherapy can also help with a lack of mobility or hypermobility. Hypermobility happens when your joints have an extended range of motion. While it sounds beneficial, hypermobility can lead to a lack of joint stability.
  • Non-Invasive: Understandably, some athletes want to avoid invasive forms of pain relief. Specific surgical procedures can do more harm than good to an athlete. Fortunately, the non-invasiveness of prolotherapy means it doesn’t risk damaging the body as invasive surgery sometimes can.

Are There Potential Risks of Prolotherapy?

Thankfully, there aren’t many risks associated with prolotherapy. The main risk associated with this procedure is dealing with a slight amount of pain in or around your injection site. As with nearly any procedure, there’s also a potential risk that prolotherapy may not stop your joint pain.

Speaking with a medical professional about any risks you face by receiving prolotherapy treatment is always a good idea.

Preparing for Prolotherapy Sessions

It’s understandable to feel excited about a future free from joint pain. To start with the prolotherapy process, you’ll need to schedule a consultation with a medical clinic. This consultation lets a professional learn about your medical history, the extent of your joint pain, and potential concerns.

Your consultation is the perfect time to ask any questions that may arise while you prepare for prolotherapy. A medical professional may also explain certain activities or medications to discontinue as your prolotherapy session nears.

Post-Prolotherapy Care


Wondering how to care for yourself after prolotherapy is understandable. You should receive post-case instructions from the professional administering your prolotherapy treatment.

A few important things to do after prolotherapy can include:

  • Limiting the types and durations of physical activities
  • Taking a recommended amount of over-the-counter pain reliever
  • Placing ice on the injection site to minimize pain
  • Avoiding submerging the affected area in hot water
  • Attending scheduled follow-up appointments if necessary

Is Prolotherapy Right for You?

It’s understandable to wonder if prolotherapy is right for you. Scheduling a prolotherapy session is typically best for people living with joint pain brought on by various factors, including medical conditions and injuries.

If a medical professional encourages you to seek prolotherapy, consider following up on this

suggestion. You can also seek out prolotherapy if you want a non-invasive way to potentially live with less joint pain or to be completely free from pain.

After completing your prolotherapy treatment, you’ll likely gain the best results through a healthy diet. For example, maintaining a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids can help you live a life free from joint pain. Exercising in a non-strenuous way may also help with painful joints.

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Aaron Smith
Aaron Smith
Aaron Smith is an LA-based content strategist and consultant in support of STEM firms and medical practices. He covers industry developments and helps companies connect with clients. In his free time, Aaron enjoys swimming, swing dancing, and sci-fi novels.


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