Ultrasound Guided Prolotherapy

Vancouver, BC

Dr. Santos has treated hundreds of patients using his prolotherapy protocol. Dr. Santos will use ultrasound to exam the joint as well as guide the needle for accurate placement of the solution. Success with prolotherapy is quite high, over 80%. Patients typically experience a resolution of their pain after 1-2 treatments. But very severe cases may need up to 5 treatments. Treatment is performed every 4-6 weeks and improvement in pain should be experienced after each treatment.

We use ozone and dextrose in our prolotherapy solutions and can combine the treatment with the K-Laser. Platelet rich plasma therapy may also be recommended in stubborn cases.

Why us?

Dr. Santos has a tremendous amount of experience and training in prolotherapy, platelet rich plasma and MSK ultrasound. We are one of the few clinics that utilize ultrasound in diagnosis and treatment during prolotherapy. We believe ultrasound is crucial, when injecting into certain joints, in placing the needle into the damaged area to yield the best clinical outcome.  Studies have shown that even the best doctors can miss the desired target without ultrasound guidance.

How does it work?

Prolotherapy involves the injection of an "irritant" solution into the area where ligaments are weak and/or damaged. Over the next few days, cells called "macrophages," literally big eaters, are attracted into the area by the presence of this irritant solution. Once they arrive, these macrophages pick up the irritant solution and carry it away for disposal (they are the garbage men of the body). As the macrophages are finishing their job, the body sends in "fibroblasts," literally connective tissue builders, to lay down fibrous tissue wherever they detect damage to connective tissue such as ligaments. Studies demonstrate it effects marked improvement in 92% of cases.

What is injected and how often are the treatments?

In a prolotherapy treatment, a substance is injected using a slender needle next to the site where soft tissue (ligament, tendon, muscle, fascia, joint capsule) is injured or has torn away from the bone. Dr. Santos will use ultrasound to guide the needle into the damaged area. The substance used in the injection is a natural irritant agent. Examples include:

•Sugar (dextrose or glucose)

•Platelet Rich Plasma


The agent is typically used with a local anesthetic (lidocaine or procaine). Prolotherapy involves a series of injections, reportedly ranging from 1 to 5, depending on the condition and the individual being treated. The injection series may cover 3 to 6 months with injections at 4 to 6 week intervals.

What is the cost?

The cost will vary on the number of joints treated. The cost will range from $100 to $150

What are the possibleside effects of prolotherapy?

Possible side effects may last a few days include: •Swelling •Soreness •Allergic reaction