How To Fix Nagging Shoulder Pain

How to fix that nagging shoulder pain

Is lingering shoulder pain inhibiting you from your daily activities or performing at a high level? Ever get a shoulder stinger while playing football or goofing around as a youngster? It is likely that you caused damaged to surrounding ligaments or labrum of the shoulder. When that happens, even endless hours of physical therapy and icing the shoulder can’t make the pain go away completely. What can you do? It’s time to learn a little more about PRP regenerative injections!


Why do I still have shoulder pain?

Shoulder pain is caused by connective tissue or surrounding musculature that is injured during an abnormal movement. The muscles or tendons that are usually involved are the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis, or teres minor (rotator cuff muscles). The dysfunction of these muscles causes a downstream effect by inhibiting certain muscles or over-activation. The most common injury in the shoulder joint is to the supraspinatus – inhibiting shoulder flexion & abduction, as well as internal rotation (lifting the arm to pick up an item).

Shoulder pain is quite common because the dynamic function of our shoulder puts heavy strain on the surrounding muscles and connective tissues. PRP may have significant benefits for many shoulder injuries. It is suggested to consult with a specially trained PRP practitioner before shoulder replacement surgery. Shoulder replacement surgeries often cost thousands of dollars and recovery times are substantial.

The body is a patch and repair system – if an effected joint/structure is injured the bodies secretes calcium to mend and heal the structure (connective tissue, ligament, tendon, muscle, etc). This leaves the body with bone spurs, calcified connective tissues, and a consistent dull achy pain. Alternative treatments may provide temporary relief such as chiropractic adjustments, physical therapy, topical creams, homeopathics, cold laser, ultrasound, and E-stem… the list goes on and on. These therapies may be beneficial to the joint and surrounding tissues but they do not physically heal and regrow the damaged tissue.

PRP regenerative injections are platelets and plasma extracted out of your own blood, activated, and injected back into the effected joint/connective tissues. The platelets contain stem cells and growth factors that will differentiate into a cartilage cell or connective tissue cell. This will allow the physical structure to heal properly and maintain its structural integrity. And the process of the needling technique also has the added benefit of stimulating the affected joint and structures.

PRP (non-surgical) regenerative injections are actually do the opposite of what you may think. The PRP causes an inflammation of the joint, rather than an anti-inflammatory effect most treatments like cortisone injections are intended to have. But while cortisone injections temporarily mask the pain, they are detrimental and degrading to the joint. Instead of masking the symptoms, the inflammatory effects of PRP bring increased growth factors, immune cells, and blood cells and genuinely improve the healing process.


PRP Regenerative Injections may be effective in treating these conditions 

  • Rotator cuff tears
  • Frozen Shoulder (Adhensive capsulitis)
  • Chronic shoulder dislocations
  • Bicep tendinitis
  • Glenoid labral tear
  • Osteoarthitis (OA)
  • Tendinitis
  • Shoulder Impingement
  • Instability


What to expect

PRP regenerative injections may be a viable treatment option for shoulder pain and dysfunction caused by overuse or connective tissue/ligamentous damage. During the pain management consult – a thorough history will be taken, physical exam including orthopedic exams, muscle testing, and functional movement assessment. Benefits and risks of the procedure will be discussed, as well as at home instructions. Clinically, there has been a high success rate of moving patient’s out of pain, improving structure and function, and improving movement patterns. Average treatment length is approximately 3-5 treatments to see the best results with PRP regenerative injections.


Other treatment options for shoulder pain 

  • Movement and mobility specialists (Your Healthy Spine Integrative Clinic)
  • Physical Therapy (Movement Rx)
  • Chiropractic adjustments
  • Cold Laser
  • Graston technique
  • Trigger point therapy/ART/Massage Therapy.



“Humpty Dumpty has nothing on me – thanks to Spark Health and PRP.”

“Spark Health has been an absolute lifesaver to me over this past year. I was initially treated for turf toe and both ankles for instability. After 1 PRP treatment, I was back in action and was able to return to teaching spinning class and snowboarding.”

“Through a sequence of unfortunate events, I ended up sustaining multiple injuries to my shoulder, low back, pelvis and hip. I saw 3 different physical therapists, a chiropractor, two orthopedic surgeons, a physical medicine doctor and an acupuncturist; all leaving me with no answers, increased pain and having spent thousands of dollars with no results, just worsening of symptoms. I have Ehlers-Danlos so for me surgery is never the best option nor does it target areas I need the most help with.”

“I am so grateful to the doctors at Spark for their global approach to getting me put back together. After just one PRP treatment to the pelvis and lower back, I had more than 70% improvement and will probably need only one other injection there. I am so appreciative for Spark’s pricing; most of the other clinics charge hundreds of dollars more per treatment.”

“Platelet Rich Plasma and Spark Health have been life-changing to me.”

Dr. Jason Phan ND – Spark Health – Naturopathic Medical Doctor specializing in IV Vitamin Therapy, PRP/Prolotherapy Regenerative Injections, Men’s and Women’s Health, and Optimal Living. 

The Show Featuring Dr. Cicerone

Listen to “The Show 11-17-16 Dr. Aliza Cicerone” on Spreaker.

Our very own Dr. Cicerone, aka “Dr. C,” was on “The Show” with Elizabeth Meza. They talked naturopathic medicine, prolotherapy and all things Spark Health! Dr. C shared valuable insight into how Spark Health finds the roots of its patients’ health issues, and neutralizes them in a natural and conclusive fashion. Meza conducted an informative and engaging interview that allowed Dr. C to really delve deeply into the benefits Spark Health offers its patients. Dr. C discussed the four key elements of Spark Health’s products and services: PRP Injections, PRP Facials, Vitamin Injections and Vitamin IV Therapy.

Dr. C explained, “Prolotheraphy is a regenerative joint injection. And it’s been done in the professional athletic world for years now, and in the past — probably — 5 years or so it’s really become more mainstream. So, the public has access to it.” Dr. C broke down the differences between platelet rich prolotherapy (PRP Therapy) and the dextrose prolotherapy which is a sugar solution. PRP Therapy employs fascinating a technique which involves using some of the patients’ own blood as an essential part of the prolotherapy. Spark Health’s patented PRP Injections have aided everyone from crossfit athletes, to triathletes all the way to the “weekend warriors” among us.

This interview is packed with information, and Dr. C makes it all easy to understand. More importantly: she explains how it all works. She goes into detail about how Spark Health’s services enrich and repair our bodies from the inside out. So, give this a listen and learn how Spark Health can help you live a happy and healthy life!

Prolotherapy & Joint Pain in San Diego

Spark Health has focused its medical background in the areas of pain management and improving athletic performance. Utilizing a sports medicine background with natural medical knowledge, prolotherapy and PRP regenerative injections are the main therapeutic modality performed for pain. Our practitioners are highly trained in physical medicine and regenerative joint injections being taught by The American Osteopathic Association of Prolotherapy Regenerative Medicine.

Regenerative injections have been treating acute and chronic pain for the past 40 years. It has gained popularity in the United States due to NBA star Kobe Bryant going to Germany to receive Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP). Now NFL stars such as Brandon Marshall have been receiving regenerative injections for acute physical conditions. Prolotherapy has been showing promising results compared to cortisone (steroid) injections. It has shown long lasting and well-tolerated results in nearly every joint of the body.

Prolotherapy is a mixture of 50% dextrose solution combined with 0.9% normal saline and an anesthetic such as lidocaine. This formula is specially formulated to produce inflammation in a person’s affected joint. Yes, you read that correct, prolotherapy causes inflammation in the joint, which therefore, your body produces an inflammatory response to bring growth factors, cofactors to produce collagen and elastic fibers to the area to promote healing. An amazing concept that allows the body to heal itself and aligns quite well with the naturopathic philosophy of let nature be thy cure. Instead of dampening the bodies own biological processes with pharmaceutical drugs, prolotherapy utilizes the bodies own immune cells to stimulate growth and repair.

[cws-widget type=text title=”Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections”]

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections is a safe procedure that involves a blood collection and a specialized needling technique to improve joint pain and joint function. PRP procedure involves collecting a patients blood that is spun down to extract platelets. Platelets are a natural substance the body produces that induce stem cell production, collagen production, elastic fiber production, and contain growth factors that are beneficial in healing and repair of joints. Once these platelets are collected they are injected back into a patient’s injured joint which causes an inflammatory response (which is good). PRP induces the bodies own healing response to take place while the platelets are acting as stem cells and inducing growth and repairs of the joint capsule and surrounding soft tissue. PRP is a great alternative to steroid injections, pharmaceutical interventions, or even surgery.

Prolotherapy/PRP regenerative injections will benefit the professional athlete but also the normal wear and tear on our bodies. It will help repair nagging aches and pains, but also prevent serious surgeries in the future. The best time to receive prolotherapy/PRP is anytime! There are some athletes that receive treatment prior to competition to strengthen the ligaments and connective tissues. Acute and chronic conditions can be effectively treated. Prolotherapy/PRP has only recently been available to the general public due to its expanding research and science behind the art of regenerative injections. Call now to learn more about Prolotherapy/PRP and book your initial consult today!

Dr. Jason Phan NMD
Spark Health

Is your body feeling achy? Try these natural foods…

Do your days consists of joint pain and stiffness?   Try adding these foods to your diet for a natural remedy.  They work to reduce pain and symptoms related to painful joints.

Add low impact workouts and maintain a healthy weight to help ease your symptoms.  You may be experiencing symptoms of osteoarthritis.

1.   Eat foods rich in antioxidants. A variety of colors of organic fruits and vegetables are good sources, and can help to reduce tissue damage from inflammation.

2.   Daily use of Turmeric and Ginger in cooking and/or supplements for their natural anti-inflammatory properties.  Great to put in smoothies or tea.  Turmeric also provides clear acne-free skin.

3.   Consume omega-3s. The omega-3 fatty acids in oily fish (Salmon), walnuts and freshly ground flaxseed can help reduce inflammation.

Osteoarthritis and Prolotherapy Treatment

Osteoarthritis affects nearly 27 million Americans.  Symptoms many experience are stiffness, pain, swelling, and reduced range of motion.

NSAIDs and Tylenol are usually prescribed for the pain if more conservative therapies are not providing relief. But pain medication comes with their own host of side effects like GI bleeding, or liver and kidney dysfunction.

As we age, the arthritis may only worsen, and lead to surgery. But what about a non-surgical alternative?

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin reported that after a year, patients who were given Prolotherapy had less pain, and better function in their knees, versus those who were given placebo injections. Most patients were satisfied and reported no adverse effects.

If you’re experiencing knee pain, instability, osteoarthritis, an ACL or other ligament/tendon tear, Prolotherapy may be the solution you have been looking for!

Contact us today to learn more about our Prolotherapy treatments.  858-228-4188

Why am I in pain?

Have you ever experienced…

  • Back pain
  • Shoulder pain
  • Wrist pain
  • Ankle pain
  • Neck pain
  • Foot pain
  • Hip pain
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Athletic injuries
  • Torn ACL/MCL
  • Tennis elbow
  • Golfer’s elbow
  • Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome
  • Muscle spasms
  • Trigger points
  • Sprained ankle
  • Torn rotator cuff tendon
  • Labral tear
  • Radiating pain
  • Strained muscles
  • Jumpers knee
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Post surgery pain
  • Hyermobile joints?

Much of the time the pain comes from..

  • Ligaments and Tendons
  • Ligaments attach bone to bone, stabilizing the joint
  • Tendons attach muscle to bone, moving the joint
  • Like steel cables they confer strength, but when they’re damaged or over-stretched (lax) the nerves in them send lots of pain signals!

What’s normally done for pain?

  • Ice
  • Anti-inflammatory medicine (NSAID): Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Aspirin, Celecoxib, Diclofenac, Indomethacin, etc.
  • Immobilization

A Better Solution: Prolotherapy & Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP)

  • How it works
    1. Injection of a natural proliferant (dextrose) + anesthetic or your own platelets (PRP) + anesthetic. PRP is usually used with more severe injuries.
    2. This creates a local inflammatory reaction, drawing blood to the area especially white blood cells and platelets which secrete growth factors
    3. Growth factors promote collagen deposition, regeneration and growth = healing the damaged tissue
  • Expected treatment outcomes
    1. Decrease or eliminate Pain
    2. Improve ability to function in your activities of daily living
    3. Increase muscle strength where weakness was present due to ligament or tendon injury
    4. Decrease or eliminate stiffness in joints due to muscle spasm and arthritis
    5. Regenerate damaged, lax, torn ligaments and tendons


Let Spark Health help relive your pain today.



Advanced Naturopathic Medicine Inc. DBA Spark Health Naturopathic Medicine.