The world series of baseball has been an exciting series between the Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers in October 2017. Watching these athletes throw the ball 97 miles per hour and watch how they warm up their shoulders and elbows is quite fascinating.
When the pitch is replayed in slow motion – the torque and velocity that the pitcher’s place upon throwing a 5.25-ounce baseball towards home plate just doesn’t look healthy for their joints!
Ways to treat your elbow pain and keep them healthy.
Causes of elbow pain:
- Golfers elbow
- Tennis elbow
- Ligament damage
Tommy John Surgery, or the ulnar collateral ligament surgery, was popularized by the famous baseball player. It is quite common for a baseball pitcher to put extreme stress on their ulnar collateral ligament causing dysfunction and pain.
With advances in orthopedic medicine – athletes were able to have surgery, stay out a few months, and return to playing. Athletes weren’t coming back 100%, but these surgeries were extremely helpful. Orthopedic surgeons can heal damaged ligaments by grafting a tendon or ligament from another part of the body or obtain a cadaver tissue to repair the ligament.
How to treat these injuries naturally:
- RICE – rest, ice, compression, elevate
- Don’t do anything and let the body heal
- Topical creams and ointments
- Homeopathic remedies such as arnica or traumeel.
- Physical therapy
- PRP or prolotherapy
- Stem cell therapy
Injury to ligaments causes ligament laxity. Meaning that the ligament structure becomes weakened by the injury or trauma. This laxity leads to compensatory biomechanical changes in the musculature – leading to hypertonic muscles (tight muscles) The hypertonic muscles will lead to “muscle knots”, muscle spasms, compression of nerves (shooting pains).
Ligament laxity may be the culprit of many injuries due to the changes in biomechanics. So what can fix ligament laxity? Rehabilitation can strengthen connective tissues such as ligaments but not as effective as we need them to be. PRP or prolotherapy is a new advancement in medicine to inject stem cells and growth factors that may regrow or restore the bodies ligaments.
How PRP May Help
PRP (platelet rich plasma) injections are your own blood components that are extracted from your blood and injected back into the specific damaged connective tissues. The PRP contains stem cells and growth factors that have the potential to regrow or restore joint function.
PRP has been receiving a lot of research and has seen significant clinical results. In patients with elbow pain, PRP may replace the Tommy John surgery in the future due to the healing capabilities of stem cells.
“I have been struggling with elbow pain on and off for the last two years. In particular, it was the tendon that attached my tricep to my elbow and I experienced pain during any sort of pressing motion. I had heard a lot of good things about PRP from friends who have gone to Spark, so I decided to give it a try with Dr. Phan at the Spark Health Clinic. I had a short consultation to confirm my pain was a good candidate for PRP Prolotherapy and then came back two weeks later for the PRP injections. Dr. Phan and the Spark Health team is extremely knowledgeable and made the whole process really easy. Four weeks after I had the PRP the pain was completely gone and my elbow has been good as new ever since. I was amazed! If you are struggling with joint pain I highly recommend you go in for a PRP consultation at Spark Health Clinic.”
If you are struggling with elbow pain or any types of pain – seeking a medical professional is suggested. Imaging studies such as X-ray, MRI’s and scans are important in the diagnosis of the pain. Elbow pain can be a drag – consult with a PRP practitioner and see if PRP can change your life also!
For more information please contact Spark Health at Spark@MySparkHealth.com or (858) 228-4188. Spark conveniently services San Diego and all of North County. For more information on PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) Prolotherapy click here.
Dr. Jason Phan ND – Naturopathic Medical Doctor specializing in PRP (platelet-rich plasma)/Prolotherapy Regenerative Injections, Men’s and Women’s Health, and Optimal Living.