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Healing effects of prolotherapy in treatment of knee osteoarthritis healing effects of prolotherapy in treatment of knee osteoarthritis



Pelotherapy is an injection therapy for chronic musculoskeletal pain. We conducted a two-arm controlled trial to assess the efficacy of prolotherapy for knee osteoarthritis (OA).

Materials and methods

A total of 104 adults with at least 6 months of painful primary knee OA were treated with dextrose prolotherapy (group I). They were divided into two subgroups: Ia and Ib. Subgroup Ia was treated with both techniques of prolotherapy (Hackett technique – classic, traditional prolotherapy – and Lyftgot technique – neural prolotherapy), whereas subgroup Ib was treated with the Hackett technique only. Extra-articular and intra-articular injections were administered at 1, 2, and 3 months, with as needed additional treatments at months 4 and 5. A total of 24 adults with at least 6 months of painful primary knee OA were treated with physiotherapy (group II). Outcome measures included the following: clinical assessment; visual analogue scale (VAS), 10; Western Ontario McMaster University Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC), 96 points; plain radiographs; and musculoskeletal ultrasound. Postprocedure hot packs were applied, and at-home massage and exercises were taught.


128 Patients enrolled in the study were matched with each other for sex, age, disease durations, and BMI. Subgroups Ia and Ib reported a significant improvement as regards the clinical assessment, VAS, WOMAC, and radiological assessment at 12 months, compared with their baseline at month 0 and compared with group II (P ≤ 0.001). At 12 months, the mean ± SD of VAS was 0.32 ± 0.27 for subgroup Ia, 0.44 ± 0.5 for subgroup Ib, and 9.9 ± 1.65 for group II, and the mean ± SD of WOMAC was 11.32 ± 10.3 for subgroup Ia, 18.5 ± 10.25 for subgroup Ib, and 79.5 ± 22.63 for group II. Postprocedure application of hot packs, massage, and paracetamol resulted in diminution of injection-related pain. There were no adverse events.


Prolotherapy resulted in clinically sustained improvement of pain, function, and radiological assessment, which means that the healing effects of prolotherapy is better than that of physiotherapy. The combination of the two prolotherapy techniques results in quicker and better improvement for patients in terms of the clinical assessment, VAS, and WOMAC.


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Correspondence to D. M. I. Soliman M.B.B.CH. (Honor Degree), M.Sc..

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Soliman, D.M.I., Sherif, N.M., Omar, O.H. et al. Healing effects of prolotherapy in treatment of knee osteoarthritis healing effects of prolotherapy in treatment of knee osteoarthritis. Egypt Rheumatol Rehabil 43, 47–52 (2016).

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