What is It? | How Does it Work?

What is Prolotherapy?

Prolotherapy is a natural, safe and effective treatment for chronic pain and arthritis that that does not involve surgery or drugs and has minimal down time. Prolotherapy uses the body’s natural healing ability to relieve chronic pain, strengthen injured tissues, and restore function. With Prolotherapy, the pain is NOT covered up. The injury and source of the pain is healed. Common conditions treated include: sciatica, back pain, meniscal tears, tendinopathy, sprained ligaments, neck pain, rotator cuff, golfer/tennis elbow, wrist/thumb arthritis, TMJ pain, and foot/heel pain.

The treatment was first developed in the 1930s by a surgeon, Dr. Earl Gedney, who injured his own thumb. It is designed to treat musculoskeletal injuries at their root cause – damaged ligaments, tendons and/or cartilage. Soon after, doctors Hackett and Hemwall refined the treatment and dedicated their lives to prolotherapy. Today it is considered a first line therapy for many physicians, including Dr. ACE, for long-term resolution of pain.

How Does it Work?

Prolotherapy is the first option in a family of injections called Regenerative Injection Therapies (RIT). In prolotherapy, a concentrated dextrose solution is injected in joints, ligaments and tendons that are weakened and stretched out from injury or damage. These injections create a localized, temporary area of inflammation. The inflammation activates fibroblasts (cells that produce collagen), and attracts platelets and stem cells to the area. Platelets deliver numerous types of growth factors that have been shown to bring in new blood vessels, activate more fibroblasts, and bring more stem cells to the area to further heal the injection site. It can be used years after the initial pain or problem began, as long as the person is healthy. The procedure is performed in less than one hour, awake and using local anesthesia. According to research studies, biopsies confirm thicker ligaments, tendons, and cartilage after prolotherapy treatments. Prolotherapy is a great treatment if you have an acute injury that just won’t heal in a timely fashion or long term degenerated joints that ache and feel unstable. For most patients it takes several injections spaced at 3 to 4 week intervals to achieve a maximum result. Dr. ACE will be able to advise how many treatments are indicated given your individual situation. Here at Regenerate Health Medical Center, Dr. ACE examines and evaluates each patient to determine if they are a candidate for this treatment. Since the injections themselves are activating the body’s healing response Dr. ACE works with each patient to optimize their healing ability prior to therapy by establishing a plan of action to get the best results from the injection therapies. Dr. ACE has studied and trained with the American Association of Orthopedic Medicine, the Naturopathic Association of Therapeutic Injections, the American Osteopathic Association of Prolotherapy, the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians as well as numerous highly skilled physicians. At Regenerate Health Medical we don’t let pain get in your way.

Before Prolotherapy – Bone on bone knee, joint space narrowing

After Prolotherapy – Cartilage has been regenerated and joint space restored.

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Degenerative joint disease
  • Tendonitis
  • Sports injuries
  • Sprains & ligament injuries
  • Ligament laxity, joint instability & hyper mobility
  • Over-Manipulation Syndrome
  • Low back pain & sciatica
  • Hip Pain – arthritis, bursitis, labrum lesions
  • Knee pain – meniscal, ACL, MCL, LCL tears
  • Chondromalacia patella
  • Foot & ankle pain – plantar fasciitis, sprains, Morton’s neuroma
  • Neck pain – whiplash, headache, migraines
  • Shoulder pain – rotator cuff, glenoid labrum tears
  • Elbow pain – golfer’s & tennis elbow
  • Wrist pain – carpal tunnel, weak or sore wrists
  • Hand – thumb & finger pain
  • TMJ
  • Many of these types of conditions may do better with PRP, the doctor will advise you on the best course of treatment at your first visit.

Conditions that do not respond favorably to Prolotherapy:

  • Fibromyalgia
  • Chronic myofascial pain syndromes
  • Severely herniated discs
  • Central Spinal Stenosis
  • Complete Rotator Cuff Tears
  • Frank Surgical Conditions
  • Pain from Cancer
  • Pain from Autoimmune Conditions


"I went to see Dr. ACE, because I had two bulged thoracic disks that keep getting re-injured every year; With her expertise, knowledge and use of very targeted machines, she not only broke the re-injured cycle, but in addition she customized a nutritional and exercise plan to improve my overall well-being. So I highly recommend Dr. ACE and Regenerate Health Medical Center, for all your medical, sport and nutrition needs.” - Jorge

"Dr Ace is truly brilliant - she is kind and knows her stuff! Thank you Dr Ace!” - Angela

"I can not recommend Dr. ACE and Regenerate more highly. She is a compassionate, thoughtful, passionate doctor who thinks strategically and is using cutting edge technology and research to get her patients truly better. I have a host of health issues including a chronic injury in my right hand, wrist and shoulder that I have struggled with for years. I have seen a lot of orthos, PT's chiro's, acupuncturist, etc. and some have helped but no one has been able to really break the cycle of pain I deal with, especially when I try and exercise. Dr. ACE is so knowledgable and knew exactly what to ask, what to check for and what to do. She created a comprehensive plan including diet, supplement recommendations, prolotherapy, voltage therapy and now personal training. In a few short weeks, I have seen actual results including less pain, increased strength (which I didn't think was possible) and for once, I have hope that I can recover from these injuries that have plagued me and kept me from getting stronger. I could not more highly recommend her for any medical issue you are facing.” - Amy

"I have been seeing Dr. ACE since February 2016 and she has been extremely proactive in finding out about my health issues. Dr. ACE has found out more about my health in less than two months than my regular doctors have in decades. She is very educated and dedicated in her field and is like a CSI figuring out why I'm having the life limiting symptoms I have been experiencing. If you want to understand and know what's going on with your body instead of the regular route of being sent home with a bunch of preventative medications I highly recommend a visit to Dr. ACE!” - Caroline

“After 1 prolotherapy treatment my ankle pain is 50% better. I should have come to Dr. ACE years ago when my tendonitis started! I’ll be referring everyone I know to Dr. ACE.” - Clint


Contact Us

Regenerate Health Medical Center +1.805.620.7122 phone / +1.805.258.5318 fax /

Want healthcare from the comfort of your own home? Telemedicine Available. Just ask!

Address: 1933 Cliff Drive #27B Santa Barbara CA 93109
Hours: Monday/Thursday 12:30-6:30pm, Tuesday/Friday 9am-3pm, Wednesday/Saturday/Sunday - Closed





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