Rotator cuff tears, AC joint separations, sprained or strained shoulders, unstable joint, impingement syndromes all are all well known injuries in shoulders.
This is because shoulder problems are common with both recreational and more serious athletes. Each of these injuries, and more, can be effectively treated with Prolotherapy. Prolotherapy has many advantages over surgery, which first and foremost is the fact that it gets at the root cause of the athlete’s problem, which is tendon or ligament weakness. It also has less rehabilitation time, costs less, and avoids the flaws associated with rotator cuff surgery.
A study done at the Mayo Clinic in 1997 reported a complication rate of 38 percent in shoulders undergoing rotator cuff repair. In order of frequency, the complications of the surgery were frozen shoulder, deep infection, and dislocation. Many of these patients who developed frozen shoulder needed a second surgical procedure to remove the adhesions.
Rotator Cuff Impingement and Tendonitis
All athletes are affected by this but it is even more common with pitchers, tennis players, swimmers and any sport that involves a throwing motion. Rotator cuff tendinitis occurs when the small muscles of the rotator cuff become strained causing weakness of these structures and subsequent tendinitis.
Impingement syndrome occurs when the rotator cuff tendon becomes pinched between the head of the humerus and the acromion process when the arm is raised above the head. This happens because the space gets narrowed, as occurs when the rotator cuff muscles weaken and the humeral head rides high in the socket or when bone spurs and calcium deposits narrow the space. Impingement also occurs when the contents of the subacromial space increase in size, most often due to a swollen rotator cuff tendon or bursa, which is painfully squeezed between the humeral head and the acromion process.
Treatment for the above usually includes rest, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), physical therapy, and cortisone injections. Cortisone has a strong anti-inflammatory property, so it may reduce the swelling in the tendon and bursa, relieving the symptoms. Most of the time, these treatments may temporarily help. But since the underlying cause has not been addressed the problem usually returns. Degenerative fraying and tearing of the tendon may occur if constant irritation of the tendon occurs over time. The way to treat this process is with Prolotherapy. This, combined with gradual re-strengthening of the rotator cuff muscles, give an excellent chance for a full recovery and performance.