The October 2007 issue of the American Journal of Radiology published an article entitled Sonigraphically Guided Intratendinous Injection of Hyperosmolar Dextrose to Treat Chronic Tendinosis of the Achilles tendon: a Pilot Study
The study design was simple. Take chronic cases of Achilles tendinosis (degenerated tendons) as documented by ultrasound and then inject them with Dextrose Prolotherapy into the exact location of the tendinosis. In other words, the injections were also guided by ultrasound. Then ask the patients how they did and then re-x-rays them and see if the tendon configuration changed. Could a study better prove Prolotherapy?
The mean age of the patients in this study was 52.6 years and each had suffered an average of 28.6 months with the Achilles pain. Each person underwent sonography-guided intratendinous injections with 25% hyperosmolar dextrose every 6 weeks until symptoms resolved or no improvement was shown.
The results were that 33 tendons in 32 patients were successfully treated. The mean number of treatment sessions was 4.0. The range was 2 to 11. The patients had a statistically significant decline in their pain level (p less than .0001). The number of tendons with anechoic clefts or foci was reduced by 78% (per ultrasound). Follow-up telephone interviews of the 30 available patients at a mean of 12 months after treatment revealed that 20 patients were still asymptomatic, nine patients had only mild symptoms, and one patient had moderate symptoms. In all, there were 3 failures. Success rate was 30/33 or about 90%!!!!
The conclusions of the authors were that intratendinous injections of hyperosmolar dextrose yielded a good clinical response; that is, a significant reduction in pain at rest and during tendon-loading activities in patients with chronic tendinosis of the Achilles tendon. I would go on to say that a further conclusion should be that Dextrose Prolotherapy is the treatment of choice for tendinosis!
This study was carried out at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver, British Columbia. It involved the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. I commend them for their work. They basically proved what I and other Prolotherapy doctors have known for a long time – that Prolotherapy can cure a lot of pain in people with Achilles tendinosis. If you or a loved one or friend has been told that you have tendinosis, then Dextrose Prolotherapy is the treatment you should seek!