preliminary findings from a clinical study of 128 patients with Yibing Li, MD, Katherine Cazilas, PA-C, MPAS, Leah Tabor, BS, Jeffrey Xue, Christina Luncsford
Setting: Outpatient Pain Management and Rehabilitation Clinic
Participants: 128 patients (aged 36-98, 63 male and 65 female) with joint pain and limited function from various degrees of osteoarthritis.
Case Description: Ligament laxity, tendinopathy, cartilage degeneration, and previous joint injuries/surgeries are the major root causes of joint pain and osteoarthritis. Dextrose prolotherapy, platelet rich plasma (PRP) and amniotic allograft injection into joints and surrounding weakened ligaments and tendons are effective treatments for reducing joint pain, improving functional status and correcting underlying causes of osteoarthritis. Among 128 patients with persistent joint pain, majority of those were diagnosed with moderate to severe degree of degenerative joint disease, ligament laxity or tendinopathy from imaging studies and have failed many traditional conservative treatments.
Outcome measures: From September 2015 to January 2017, 90 knees, 18 hips, 15 shoulders and 5 ankle joints were injected with our protocol. Outcomes were monitored using VAS, 80-point functional extremity scores, X- ray and MSK ultrasound comparisons before and 2 months after treatment.
Results: Data was collected from 105 out of 128 patients. Overall 36 patients (34%) reported 75-100% improvement, 28 (27%) patients reported 50-75%, 25 patients (24%) reported 25-49%, and 16 patients (15%) reported 0-24% improvement. Almost all patients showed varied degrees of soft tissue regeneration from ultrasound comparison before and after treatment, some of those showed X- ray changes. None experienced any adverse reactions from these injections.
Conclusion: Comprehensive regenerative therapies are very safe, effective, non-surgical treatments for persistent joint pain and functional limitations from soft tissue degeneration and osteoarthritis. They should be considered as an alternative option to surgical intervention. However, further clinical studies and follow ups are needed to evaluate the long term outcomes and benefits.
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