Trigger Point Injection is a medical procedure using a homeopathic, botanical injection called Traumeel to treat painful areas of muscle.
What are Trigger Points?
Trigger points are localized tender spots in the muscles often detected as lumps or “knots.” These knots have been shown to cause pain, tenderness and lack of mobility. Trigger points form when a muscle is injured, or overly tense. Chronic inflammation in the muscle and physical/emotional stress all contribute to “knots” and formation of scar tissue which may be helped with TPIs (trigger point injection). Trigger points can also form through time by the process of wear and tear on the muscle. Trigger points occur when normal, perpendicular muscle fibers get tangled and distorted out of their uniform pattern. Trigger points are felt as a taut band of inflamed muscle fiber and are painful when pressed. Many people who have trigger points may also have headaches, tendonitis, fibromyalgia and/or myofascial pain syndrome.
Proper treatment of these unwanted knots will allow the body to enjoy maximum activity. While massage typically gets the surface muscles to relax, trigger point injections access muscles much deeper in the body.
What Happens during Trigger Point Injection?
In the TPI procedure, our health care professional inserts a small needle into the patient’s trigger point. Trigger Points are treated with a homeopathic injection known as Traumeel. The advantage of using Traumeel is that it has no known negative side effects and is non-toxic. Traumeel is a mixture of many botanical ingredients such as mountain arnica, marigold, witch hazel, comfrey, chamomile, and many more. It decreases inflammation, and relieves pain immediately.
Corticosteroids are more potent for more severe pains but have multiple side-effects. The trigger point injection will stimulate healing as the circulation is increased into the deeper layer muscle fibers and they can once again return to a uniform pattern. TPI is one of the most gentle, non-invasive ways of getting rid of chronic and acute pain!
When is Trigger Point Injection Used?
TPI is used to treat many muscle groups, especially those in the neck, upper back, rotator cuff and lower back. It can also be used for tendonitis, bursitis or joint pain in the arms and legs. In addition, TPI can be used to treat fibromyalgia and tension headaches. TPI also is used to alleviate myofascial pain syndrome (chronic pain involving tissue that surrounds muscle) that does not respond to other treatments.
How Long Does it Take to Heal?
We have found that a person responds much quicker when TPIs are done in conjunction with acupuncture treatments. This has been found to yield better results than with TPI or acupuncture alone. Injections are performed at East West Acupuncture and usually take just a few minutes. Several sites may be injected in one visit. It depends on the individual case, some people’s pain will resolve after their first visit, but usually it will take 8-12 visits.