The aim of this review was to identify and evaluate existing research to determine the clinical effectiveness and safety of prolotherapy injections for treatment of lower limb tendinopathy and fasciopathy.
Nine databases were searched (Medline, Science Direct, AMED, Australian Medical Index, APAIS-Health, ATSIhealth, EMBASE, Web of Science, OneSearch) without language, publication or data restrictions for all relevant articles between January 1960 and September 2014. All prospective randomised and non-randomised trials, cohort studies, case-series, cross-sectional studies and controlled trials assessing the effectiveness of one or more prolotherapy injections for tendinopathy or fasciopathy at or below the superior aspect of the tibia/fibula were included. Methodological quality of studies was determined using a modified evaluation tool developed by the Cochrane Musculoskeletal Injuries Group. Data analysis was carried out to determine the mean change of outcome measure scores from baseline to final follow-up for trials with no comparative group, and for randomised controlled trials, standardised mean differences between intervention groups were calculated. Pooled SMD data were calculated where possible to determine the statistical heterogeneity and overall effect for short-, intermediate- and long-term data. Adverse events were also reported.