Naturopathic Pain Therapeutics

"In 1994 I began my journey into the healing arts with a desire to help relieve pain and suffering simply with my hands.  I attended West Coast College of Massage Therapy in Vancouver and obtained my Registered Massage Therapist designation from the College of Massage Therapists of BC in 1996.  

I practiced Registered Massage Therapy full time at Habourview Massage and Chiropractic in Vancouver for 5 years.  During that time I realized that I had a driving curiosity to understand on a deeper level why my patients were ill; and that I had a strong desire to have more tools in my therapeutic tool box; so my curiosity drove me to research more therapies and professions.  

I had heard of Naturopathic Doctors, but honestly did not know what they did, but thought the idea of a 'natural doctor' sounded interesting.  This time of research for me was long enough ago that I had to go down to my local public library to learn more.  I looked up Naturopathic Medicine and opened up Dr.'s Michael Murray and Joseph Pizzorno's Textbook of Natural Medicine to find the page listing the Principles of Naturopathic Medicine and my spirit was so inspired to see that these could be the principles behind my approach to patient care.  Then I read about the scope of practice of naturopathic physicians and the therapeutic modalities and diagnostics available in an ND's 'toolbox' (acupuncture, botanical medicine, nutrition to name a few) - I was thrilled! Then to top this off, I went on to read that Naturopathic Physicians belong to a regulated health care profession and their training includes pre-medical studies and four years of full-time medical school - now this was serious training.  I had to learn more.

Fortunately for me my timing in looking for a naturopathic medical school could not have been better.  Instead of having to move to Toronto or the US to seek training I discovered that a new naturopathic medical school was accepting applications for their second year of students at the Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine.  I so I became one of the pioneering students of Canada's second only naturopathic medical school located in my home province of BC, in New Westminster.  What a gift I received in my studies from the dedicated Naturopathic Doctors spearheading Boucher's development, to the amazing community of Naturopathic Doctors supporting Boucher's students and school, to my passionate classmates whom I am grateful to have shared my learning with.  

 

In 2005 I acquired my Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine license from the College of Naturopathic Physicians of BC.  Since then I have continued with 

 

 
 
 
Your goal is to be free from the limitations of pain.  To regain your mobility of body, mind and spirit so you can get back to living  your life with meaning and purpose and presence.
 
In my naturopathic practice I have found and chosen to pursue therapies that:
  • resolve and alleviate pain
  • support the bodies innate ability to heal
  • remove obstacles to 'cure'
  • are effective and safe
My life as a healer started with my hands, and the trajectory of my healing tools has continued to rely on and be augmented by my palpation skills; yet my tool for therapy strangely has moved away from my hands being the healer to my healing tool being the needle.
 
The treatments that I have been drawn to, that have been placed in my path, that have always triggered a passion for healing are those that require the use of the needle.  And as needles are not everyone's favourite idea of a way to finding healing, I work very hard to create a treatment experience that is comfortable and effective.  
The naturopathic pain therapies that I offer for pain, tension, and loss of mobility are perineural injection therapy, prolotherapy and neural therapy.  
 
Prolotherapy stimulates the body’s innate healing response to strengthen and repair injured and painful joints and connective tissue.
Prolotherapy introduces small amounts of an irritant solution (dextrose) to the site of painful and injured ligaments, tendons and joints during several treatment sessions to promote growth of normal cells and tissues, reducing pain and improving normal function and mobility.

How does Prolotherapy work?

Prolotherapy works by exactly the same process the human body naturally uses to heal, the process called inflammation.  This is done by injection of a proliferant (a mild irritant solution) to the injury site, causing an inflammatory response, “turning on” the body’s natural healing process.
 
The mild inflammatory response, created by the injection technique, encourages growth of new, normal ligament or tendon fibers, resulting in a thickening and strengthening of the weakened structure. Additional treatments repeat this process, allowing a gradual buildup of tissue to restore strength to the area.
 
The effects of prolotherapy can improve joint stability, biomechanics, function and decrease pain.

What is the solution that is injected?

Prolotherapy solutions contain natural substances that stimulate the healing response, as well as local anesthetics to help with the pain of the injection.  The formula used by Dr. Moss contains a concentrated dextrose solution (12 - 25%); and 1% procaine, a local anesthetic.

What conditions can benefit from Prolotherapy?

Dr. Moss uses Prolotherapy as  one of the treatment options for addressing peripheral joint pathologies, including: hips, knees, ankles, toes, shoulders, elbows, wrists and fingers.   
Prolotherapy can be used to relieve a broad spectrum of conditions, including:
  • Achilles tendinopathy
  • Ankle and foot pain
  • Arthritis
  • Degenerative joint conditions
  • Dislocation
  • Elbow pain
  • Hip pain
  • Joint pain
  • Knee pain
  • Lateral epicondylitis (aka Tennis elbow)
  • Painful overuse injuries involving tendons – tendinitis, tendinopathies
  • Partially torn ligament, tendon or cartilage
  • Post-surgical pain
  • Repetitive strain injuries
  • Rotator cuff injury
  • Shoulder pain
  • Sports injuries
  • Sprains and strains
  • Wrist pain and injury
 
Prolotherapy can be used to treat any painful joint condition that involves damage or stretch to ligaments or tendons.
For musculoskeletal conditions affecting the spine Dr. Moss uses other therapies such as Perineural Injection Therapy and Acupuncture.  

Is Prolotherapy right for me?

Through a comprehensive patient history, physical exam and study of indicated imaging (x-ray, ultrasound), Dr. Moss evaluates your potential success with this therapy.  Success depends on factors that include injury history, overall health and ability to heal, and any underlying nutritional or other deficiencies that would impede the healing process.  In appropriate patients, prolotherapy has a high success rate.

How long is a course of Prolotherapy treatment?

Most patients require three to six treatments, at intervals of two to four weeks apart depending on the severity of the condition and a patient’s healing ability.  Occasionally a patient may require more than six treatments as well as other therapies to achieve the desired health goals.

© 2020 by Dr. Jennifer Moss. All rights reserved.

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