Is This a Surgical Procedure?

Illustration 7

Illustration 8

Illustration 9

Illustration 12

No - Non-Surgical Tendon, Ligament and Joint Reconstruction

In acute injuries the ligaments and tendons become torn. (See Illustration #7). Ligaments function to limit the range of motion that bones can move between each other. Ligaments function to stabilize joints and hold the joint together (See Illustration #8). Tendons function to attach a muscle to bone in order to provide motion. Discs and cartilage serve to absorb shock and keep the bones from rubbing against one another. If the ligaments become torn or overstretched, the joint becomes unstable and resultant friction causes the discs or cartilage to become worn down causing a loss of height. The disc and cartilage may also become worn down by repeated motion. (See Illustration #9).This loss of height causes further ligament laxity and this more instability. The friction of the joint is a stress. BONES RESPOND TO STRESS BY MAKING MORE BONE. This results in bone spurring (See Illustration #9) which is the body's attempt to splint or stabilize the unstable joint.

Degenerative disease is merely the body's attempt to stabilize joints as the tendons and ligaments have not been able to heal because of lack of blood supply. If a patient has considerable degenerative arthritis, the loss of disc or cartilage height causes a laxity of the supporting ligaments. This causes joint instability. (See Illustration #9). Reconstruction has been shown to be effective in these conditions causing the lax ligaments to become strengthened, thus stabilizing the joint and allowing for increased function and endurance (SeeIllustration #10). Some therapists add a very very small dose of cortisone to help limit discomfort.

Reconstruction therapy (also known as sclerotherapy and proliferative) is given by a slender needle, similar to the hair like needles of the acupuncturist, into the fibro-osseous junction (See Illustration #10). This is the area where the tendon or ligament attaches to the bone. The substance contains sodium morrhuate which comes from cod liver fish oil, and a local anesthetic. Repeated studies at the University of Iowa have shown that the areas injected have increased in size by 35%-40%, thus causing permanent strengthening. (See Illustrations #11 & 12).

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