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Injection Therapies in Sports Medicine: Getting Back in the Game Free From Chronic Pain

February 10, 2022

Repetitive strain injuries caused by repeated use of the same muscles, tendons, nerves, and joints gradually causing injury over time are common in sports, whether you’re a pro athlete or an avid hobbyist. Common orthopedic conditions such as tennis elbow, rotator cuff syndrome, tendonitis, or runner’s knee can leave you sidelined from the resulting pain and / or decreased range of motion. Pain from a repetitive motion injury often becomes chronic and worsens over time.

Think treatments like PT, prescription pain meds, or surgery are the only option for pain from repetitive motion injuries? Think again! Injection therapies often eliminate discomfort, and regenerative injections are revolutionizing sports medicine.

Traditional methods like surgery and physical therapy take time. While they have their place, there is now another option. Less invasive and with lasting benefits, injection therapies often help you get back in the game free from chronic pain.

But, Common Injections in Sports Medicine Aim to Reduce Pain Quickly and Allow You to Avoid Painkillers!

Therapeutic injections can get you quickly and safely back to doing what you love. They’re safe, effective, and long-acting. And, unlike surgery or PT, they give you quick results and don’t require much downtime off the court (or course, track, or field – whatever your sport of choice).

Though pain medications are quick to provide relief like injection therapies, they have their downsides. Some risk dependence or a need for a higher dosage over time. And, they aren’t a cure. You have to keep using them without any potential of your condition improving. Worse yet, they could actually lead to further musculoskeletal injury or damage.

Injections such as the following alleviate pain and have some unique benefits:

Cortisone

Cortisone is a common injectable used to relieve pain from ailments like tendonitis and arthritis. It’s a steroid used to reduce inflammation and the associated discomfort. Typically, you’ll feel relief two or three days after your injection, and many patients find it helps alleviate pain for several weeks at a time.

Hyaluronic Acid and Visco-Supplementation Injections

These injections contain hyaluronic acid, a naturally occurring component in synovial joints that is used to decrease knee pain in orthopedic medicine. In healthy knee joints, cartilage cushions the bones and fluid keeps them lubricated. Those with repetitive motion injuries and osteoarthritis in the knee have less fluid and compromised cartilage. Injected hyaluronic acid lubricates the joint and absorbs shock, so it moves more smoothly. For osteoarthritis patients, it helps decrease pain and inflammation for lasting relief up to six months.

Regenerative Medicine

Regenerative medicine promotes healing from the inside out utilizing the body’s own cells. Therapies like stem cell therapy and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections are minimally invasive, and the effects are long lasting.

While these therapies won’t help everyone avoid surgery, they’re an exciting new option available to many. Regenerative injections work by actually healing the affected area, unlike prescription painkillers, which only mask symptoms but don’t address the root cause.

Is the Future of Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Regenerative Medicine?

Many would say cutting-edge regenerative medicine is transforming sports medicine and will be the gold standard of orthopedic care. Using autologous stem cells and platelet-rich plasma, meaning they come directly from the patient that is being treated, this non-surgical approach seeks to heal repetitive motion injuries naturally. Here’s how they work.

Stem Cell Therapy

Your bone marrow is a source of stem cells, which are cells which can become other cells such as bone, cartilage, or fat. This therapy harvests your stem cells, prepares them, and then injects them into the affected area. This highly successful treatment isn’t for everyone, but it helps many experience long-lasting relief for conditions like osteoarthritis, rotator cuff tears, spinal issues, torn meniscus, torn muscles, and other musculoskeletal concerns without a surgical procedure.

Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections

Blood plasma contains a wealth of healing elements. With PRP injection therapy, your plasma is collected and prepared to deliver the growth and healing factors directly to the injured area. Promoting better function, faster recovery time, and lasting effects, PRP therapy can be used to relieve arthritis, muscle and tendon injuries, sprains, plantar fasciitis, pinched nerves, spinal issues, and more.

Talk to your doctor to find out more about stem cell and PRP injections. It’s important to note that results vary, but for many, they’re an amazing solution to finally put an end to the physical and psychological effects of chronic pain.

“Studies on the use of PRP injections in orthopedics are quite promising, and we’ve had a lot of success in improving quality of life for our patients,” says Dr. Kimberly Ting, Harvard fellowship-trained pain management specialist at Direct Orthopedic Care. She continued, “While not all patients will experience total pain relief from regenerative injection therapy, we can combine PRP or stem cell injections with other treatment options for lasting relief, improving pain and restoring function in both chronic and acute pain patients.”

To Improve Your Quality of Life and Play Without Pain, Turn to the Pain Management Specialists at DOC

At DOC, we aim to get you back out doing what you love! Unlike some practices, all of our providers have the training and experience to offer injection therapies, so you don’t have to wait for an appointment with a specific provider.

We offer specialized testing to diagnose your pain issues, and our providers work with you to create a treatment plan with a multi-disciplinary approach so you’ll get the most comprehensive treatment available. Because our pain management specialists treat you as a whole person, mind and body, combination therapies may include injection therapy, interventional procedures, and psychological, regenerative, complementary and physical therapies!

See the difference at DOC! Call us today at 855-898-2655 for an appointment or to learn more about our unique approach to orthopedic and sports medicine and innovative solutions to persistent pain.

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