Articles by Dr. Arnold

Articles by Dr. Arnold

Small RhombusHealth articles by Dr. Fred Arnold focus on prolotherapy, pain rehabilitation and natural healing.

Articles by Dr. Fred Arnold



Many patients frequently have questions regarding two of the regenerative medicine treatments we provide for painful back and joint problems: prolotherapy and prolozone. Since both treatments treat most of all the painful back and joint problems we treat, the treatment of choice is dependent upon the patient’s choice of treatment. There are many similarities and differences for these two regenerative medicine treatments and both treatments are non-surgical injection procedures to relieve pain of painful backs and joints. A comparison of the two treatment is as follows:

Solutions used
Prolotherapy uses a mixture of dextrose (sugar solution) and an anesthetic called lidocaine, along with a small amount of B12 vitamin to promote healing. Prolozone uses an anesthetic called procaine and a mixture of B vitamins (multi B vitamin, B12, folic acid), a homeopathic solution (Traumeel), dextrose (sugar water), and sodium bicarbonate. Ozone gas is injected after the prolozone solution is injected.

Number of Injections
Normally the number of individual injections are less with prolozone, based on the area treated. There is a dispersion of the solution used due to the ozone gas that spreads the healing effect over a larger area compared to prolotherapy. For people who are concerned about the number of injections performed, prolozone is frequently requested.

Amount of Pain Experienced
A small amount of pain may be experienced with both injection procedures since they both involve piercing the skin. The post injection pain may be a little more with prolotherapy due to a larger concentration of dextrose used and the associated inflammatory effects. A topical cooling spray can be used with each treatment to help with the discomfort of the needle piercing the skin.

Frequency of Visits
Initially, Prolotherapy treatments are performed 2-4 weeks apart and prolozone treatments are performed 1-2 weeks apart. As the patient’s condition improves, the time between treatments increases.

Number of Visits Needed
The number of visits needed varies for both treatments based on each individual condition. For both treatments, a mild condition may require 1-4 visits, a moderate condition may require 5-8 visits and a more severe condition requires more than 8 visits. For each treatment, there must be improvement after a few treatments to justify continued treatment.

Cost and Time
The cost of each treatment is basically the same based on the area treated. The time to perform an individual treat is a little longer with prolozone compared to prolotherapy.

Rate of Recovery
Dependent upon the therapy, the rate of recovery varies with these two regenerative medicine treatments. Some patients respond better to prolotherapy and some patients respond better to prolotherapy. If someone is not responding as we would expect with one of the treatments, a different treatment may be performed.

Expected Outcome
The expected outcome is the same for both treatments, regeneration of collagen for the rebuilding and strengthening of ligaments, tendons and cartilage. The basic difference is the mechanism of action and how it is achieved. Prolotherapy uses more dextrose which causes a stronger inflammatory response for this to occur. Prolozone uses a different anesthetic (procaine) and ozone gas to bring about regenerative effects.


  Prolotherapy Prolozone
Solutions Used Lidocaine, Dextrose, B12 Procaine, B Vitamins, sodium bicarbonate, homeopathic solution, ozone gas
Number of Injections More per area Less per area
Amount of Pain Experienced May be a little more May be a little less
Frequency of Visits Initially every 2-4 weeks Initially every 1-2 weeks
Number of visits Needed Same Same
Cost Same Same
Time to Perform A little shorter A little longer
Rate of Recovery Same Same
Expected Outcome Same Same

Having performed both treatments, I find the real advantage is having an additional treatment option available for the patients that they may desire and an additional treatment should they not respond as expected with another therapy. Since the cost, expected outcome, rate of recovery and number of visits is basically the same for the area treated, the basic differences are the solutions used, number of individual injections during each visit and frequency of visits. Both prolotherapy and prolozone have a proven track record of success and are practiced throughout the world to help patients with their painful back and joint conditions.