What is Prolotherapy?

The word Prolotherapy is a contraction of Proliferation Therapy.  It involves the injection of an irritant into tissue to stimulate the body’s inflammatory response.  This response is useful in weakened or damaged tissue because the inflammatory response results in the creation of new fibrous scar tissue that strengthens and stabilizes the affected area.  The irritant solution usually contains both hyperosmolar dextrose (sugar) and lidocaine (local anesthetic).


Who can benefit from Prolotherapy?

Prolotherapy is helpful for acute ligament injury as well as chronic musculoskeletal weakness and pain.  This includes traumatic patellar luxation and cruciate ligament injury, arthritis/degenerative joint disease, tendons and cartilage injury.

It is used most commonly in middle aged to geriatric dogs, especially those for whom anesthesia and surgery are considered high risk.


How often should it be done?

Prolotherapy treatment sessions are usually performed at two to six week intervals over several months.  The total number of treatments required depends on the condition being treated.


Are there any side effects?

Mild to moderate pain during and immediately after the injection is the most common side effect.  This means that some dogs may require mild sedation for the procedure.