Thursday, March 25, 2010

What is Prolo Therapy and PRP?

Happy Thursday everyone!

It's downhill to the weekend..wahoo! I'm sipping on my green smoothie lunch...mmm. Todays concoction was frozen fruit (bananas, peaches, strawberries, blueberries), 10 romaine lettuce leaves, cinnamon, 1 scoop Vega Sport powder. I see these smoothie recipes that are 10 ingredients plus long and I just don't see myself going there. I like a few ingredients and simple foods. One smoothie that has been on my radar is Kristen's cherry chocolate bomb shake..yumm!

Today I wanted to talk about some of the therapies that I have been using to treat the issues with the ligaments in my knees. Let me give you a little bit of history to my health issue. Ever since I was 8 years old I experienced random dislocations of my patella. I would be walking and all of a sudden I would be on the ground in crazy pain. Most events took place after I wore flip-flops or heels, excercised strenuously, or moved in the opposite direction too quickly. And sometimes I had no explanation for the events. Luckily, the patella would re-locate itself and I didn't have the gross experience of popping it back into place. Obviously these are scary events and I would have to sit on the sidelines for many sports because the risk of it going out was too high. Now that I'm older, my biggest fear is to be holding someone's baby (or my own one day) and have it pop out when I would be walking and the child would fall. Seriously, that gives me the shivers. So, a little over a year ago Ryan's best friend, Shawn told us about this amazing naturopath that him and his wife Erica were seeing. He told us about how he was using a therapy called Prolotherapy. Let me explain a little bit about this treatment method. The word prolo is short for proliferation because the treatment causes growth of of new ligament tissues in areas where there is damage. Historically, a similar procedure was first documented by Hippocrates. He used a hot poker and stuck it into the joint of the dislocated shoulder in soldiers and he discovered that they healed normally. Sorry, I know that was kind of gross. Okay so how does it work? Dextrose or sugar water is injected into the ligament or tendon where it attaches to the bone. This causes inflammation in that area which triggers great blood flow into that area (AKA nutrients) and stimulate the tissue repair. The main reason why we have injuries that last years and years is because there is little to no blood flow to the region and therefore, the tissue is starved of the nutrients it needs to heal. Yes, it can be painful as there are many nerve endings located on the ligaments. Yet, the procedure only takes a few minutes once the problem area is pinpointed exactly. Also, if your injury is many years old like mine was, the body will have built a bunch of "scar tissue" or calcium deposits around the area so the doctor doing to procedure will break it up with the needle so the body can dissolve of it. It is recommended to have the treatment done when you won't have to go to work for a few days afterwards. Yet, I always did have to go to work and I would be limping around for the first day but then the inflammation would settle down drastically. Of course every person will react differently depending on the severity of the injury. I found out that I had micro tears all along my ACL and some other tears in some tendons and ligaments that I can't remember the name of. I took about 6-10 treatments and then we moved up to Nelson. My knees have not caused me problems since having the treatment but I didn't know if they had healed enough to stop treatment. So, we decided to take the next step and use PRP.

During one of our many visits to the naturopath, our doctor told us about a different treatment that was basically 5 prolo treatments wrapped into one. This treatment was called Platelet-rich plasma therapy or PRP. This state-of-the-art therapy involves taking a blood sample and spinning it at very high speeds in a centrifuge. This causes the red blood cells to seperate from the platelets. The "liquid gold" or the platelets along with the plasma is scooped up and injected into the site of injury. Platelets are amazing due to the fact that they release growth factors. In essence, those platelets that were injected have no identity...they will turn into whatever tissue you inject it into. I know this might sound crazy and sci-fi-ish but I'm telling you BIG names are getting this procedure done from hockey players and NFL players to MMA fighters to famous golfers. When I was waiting for Ryan to finish his treatment ( he got his back and shoulders done), I looked through one folder that was study after study of the effects of PRP on a variety of conditions. This stuff is around but I bet your family doctor won't be recommending it any time soon. I really believe this therapy will be huge in the near-future. In fact, this therapy is now being looked at as a replacement to botox as it actually stimulates collagen growth and you would only have to take it once every 10 years. I found the treatment to be awesome and the feeling immediately after the treatment was quite different. I found with the PRP my body reacted immediately and I'll be honest, I couldn't walk for 1/2 hour. It was literally that immediate. I found the rest of the week it was a bit sore but nothing crazy. I definitely think having a few days off or doing it on a friday when you have the weekend to recover is a necessity. The other cool thing about this treatment is that because you are using your own blood, there is a very low chance that you will have any repercutions from having this therapy. No side effects? Yeppers ( at least with me). Of course everyone is different but its definitely not like taking a new drug which has a page of possible side effects.

I only got one knee done because he said my other knee was really strong and would just need a touch-up. Yes, the prolo worked and now my ligaments are strong in the left knee! 18 years having this problem and having it be resolved in a little over a year is so amazing to me. The technology that is out there in the natural field is far-surpassing that of big pharm (in my opinion).

I highly, highly recommend this natural, non-invasive treatment and if you want to investigate this further you can contact my naturopath, Dr. Sarge Sandhu. He is located in BC, Canada but he would be able to help you find someone in your area too. If you go tell him Melissa sent! I have sent quite a few people his way!

Below is a video from The Doctors show that shows a little more about PRP

Have a great Thursday everyone!


mailey davis said...

PRP Therapy is not a new buzz phrase but it is widely common and already adopted by many Hollywood big wigs. The following two decades medical industry has witnessed accelerated development with HGH and stem cell therapy to overpower the delayed development and adult growth hormone deficiency.

John Smith said...

Thanks for sharing your was very inflammatory, PRP Therapy large use can be seen in sports industry and is now very useful for others also.

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