Neural Therapy Treatments
What is Neural Therapy?
Neural therapy is an injection therapy technique whose origins date back to Europe in the early 1940s. Neural = nerves. This therapy focuses on the removal of nerve interference such that normal functioning can occur. When an injury or trauma occurs, the autonomic nervous system turns ON. Sometimes this on switch has trouble turning OFF, thus paving the road for chronic nerve interference, chronic muscle contraction patterns, and chronic pain.
Along with other low dose compounds or vitamins, neural therapy entails the injection of local anesthetics (procaine, lidocaine), to alter pain pathways and nervous regulation. These injections affect selected motor neuron end plates and the mobility of calcium to reset action potentials. Action potentials are like the body’s green light to take action. Neural injection therapy provides relief of chronically contracted muscle/tendon fibers, connective tissue, scar tissue, and neuralgias (nerve pain).
What are some common conditions treated by neural therapy?
Chronic headaches, migraines, post-concussion syndrome & head trauma
Scar tissue - post-surgical and/or post-injury
Chronic pain (muscular and neuropathic)
Joint pain (knee, ankle, hips, wrist, elbow, shoulder)
Osteoarthritis, degenerative joint disease, frozen shoulder, arthritis, joint instability, tendonitis, patella-femoral syndrome…
Autonomic nervous system disruption (fight or flight turns ON)
Trauma, motor vehicle accident, whiplash, ski/snowboard accident, surgery, emotional distress
Procaine (1%) is an anesthetic that stabilizes nerve and mast cells, and has vasodilatation effects. It is safe and non-addictive. This injectable induces interference within the sodium/potassium pump, such that nerve transmission and pain pathways are blocked. Procaine also antagonizes (blocks) the function of NMDA receptors, which are important in controlling memory of nerve transmission.
What does it feel like?
You may experience some local discomfort, bruising, redness or blanching. Feelings of sleepiness, drowsiness, or relaxation are very common. It is always a good idea to hang out in our waiting room after a treatment until you feel ready and alert. You should expect these feelings to subside within 20-30 minutes.
Where do you inject?
Injection sites (location and quantity) vary per patient, as everybody has different ailments and referral patterns. Injections will likely be focused on the regions of pain, as well as at the root of the affected nerve(s). Injection points often include scars, acupuncture points, muscle trigger points, and cutaneous nerve distribution.
Scar tissue created from previous injuries or surgeries create ‘interference fields’ or adhesions within neuromuscular pathways. Imagine laying a fitted bed sheet onto its appropriately sized mattress: there is only so much material to cover the mattress. If there is cinching in one corner, there will be a pull on all other corners, creating tension and torsion throughout the whole bed. This is what happens in our bodies with scar tissue in relation to fascial (connective tissue) lines.
Trigger Point Therapy
A major component of chronic pain is often tight, contracted, or spastic muscles whose tension compresses nerve pathways. These muscles are held in contraction via nerve pathways themselves, thus presenting a vicious cycle wherein one ailment perpetuates another. Neural therapy provides an interruption of this cycle by altering nerve transmission to the contracted muscle.
How long does it take to see improvement?
Some cases see improvement within the first treatment. It typically requires 3-6 sessions to determine if neural therapy is the key to relieving your chronic pain. Often patients will find relief for 1-2 days after the first treatment before the old symptoms return. This is why multiple treatments are recommended.
Caution: Your injury may feel transiently better after your first treatment. Be careful. This is not the time to go out and play extreme sports again. This is your time to rest. Although there is pain relief, underlying pathology still exists, and you are prone to injury by sensory block.
When might neural therapy not be right for you?
Nutritional deficiencies (overt)
Psychiatric illness (except depression)
End-stage chronic illness
Please don’t hesitate to contact one of our patient care coordinators with any further questions you may have.