F.A.Q.

How do Oxygen/Ozone disc injections work?

Ozone injections reduce disc volume, decrease inflammation, increase blood flow to the treated site, and as a result, it activates the body’s natural healing mechanism to improve or cure a variety of painful conditions. The vast amount of clinical data indicates that oxygen ozone disc injections work in the majority of patients and are safe.

Is Ozone therapy safe?

Multiple studies have shown that the risk ozone injection procedures is extremely low. For example, a study by Dr. Kieran Murphy at the University of Toronto calculated that the risk of ozone disc injections was near zero.

Do Ozone injections hurt?

For ozone muscle injections, most patients say that they are less uncomfortable than trigger point injections. Dr. Bleiweiss also knows this from his own experience having received ozone muscle and joint injections and trigger point injections personally. For ozone disc injections, intravenous sedation is usually administered, therefore there is no significant discomfort during the procedure. Intravenous sedation is not absolutely necessary for an ozone disc injection procedure since it can also be performed under local anesthetic if requested. However, most patients request intravenous sedation. Our patients have not reported significant ozone disc injection discomfort.

Are Ozone injections a non-surgical treatment for disc herniations?

Yes. Data indicates that Ozone therapy works on a variety of patients with such conditions. There is no surgical incision or hospital admission. The procedure involves guiding a small needle into the painful herniated disc(s) and injecting a small quantity of a known concentration of a pure oxygen/ozone mixture. Ozone injections do not mechanically disrupt the disc by removing a piece of it or subjecting it to destructive energy such as laser or heat.

Why is Ozone the best non-surgical treatment for a herniated disc?

The ozone disc injection treatment has many qualities that make it the best non-surgical disc treatment. There are numerous studies performed regarding the safety and efficacy of this type of therapy. Thousands of patients have had this safe and effective non-surgical herniated disc treatment. Ozone injections do not mechanically disrupt the disc by removing a piece of it or subjecting it to destructive energy such as laser or heat. Studies and statistics are widely available on the Web.

What conditions do Ozone injections treat?

Ozone injections have been used to treat many conditions, we are focusing on treating disc, muscle and joint pain conditions including disc herniations, sports injuries, tendon injuries, muscle spasm, chronic or acute pains in the back, neck, shoulders, hips and Knees, sciatica, fibromyalgia and painful muscle conditions.

How many Oxygen/Ozone injections will I need in order to treat my condition?

For ozone disc injections, usually only one treatment is performed. If there is near total improvement of symptoms after the procedure, the procedure will not be repeated. Some patients will continue to improve over several months. If significant partial improvement is obtained (for example 60%), a second ozone disc injection will be recommended. Some patients have reported micro-traumas of the discs or joints, for example, competitive athletes, and may require periodic injections to keep the discs and joints healthy.  For ozone muscle injections, there is no set protocol. The number of ozone injection treatments depends on the body’s response to treatment and the amount of time that the condition has been present. For example, an acute muscle strain/sprain will usually respond to one ozone injection treatment. However, a chronic muscle spasm condition that has been present for years (for example an old whiplash injury or fibromyalgia) usually takes longer to treat. However, once the condition is treated, only occasional maintenance treatment is necessary.

How long will it take until I feel better after the ozone disc injection treatment?

While some patients experience almost immediate improvement, significant relief can take 3-4 weeks. Some patients continue to experience improvement over several months after the treatment. A period of soreness after the injection may be present for approximately 24 hours or longer.

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Does Dr. Bleiweiss treat every patient with Ozone injections?

No. While Ozone injections will benefit many patients, the treatment is not appropriate for every condition. Every patient has to be evaluated for his or her specific conditions and symptoms. Dr. Bleiweiss will determine if Ozone injections are appropriate for your condition after a review of you medical records, a history and a physical examination. An appropriate treatment will be recommended and discussed with you after the thorough evaluation.

Is Ozone toxic?

Ozone is very safe when it is injected into the body at the proper volume and concentration. Ozone however should not be inhaled in its pure form. This is because the lungs do not have a high enough concentration of the enzyme that converts ozone into its bioactive form. (For example, lipid peroxides.) However, except for the lungs and the conjunctiva of the eyes, the rest of the body has the ability to rapidly convert ozone into its bioactive forms and therefore, ozone injections are safe. Our office does not expose any patient to inhaling pure ozone during procedures.

Can I get an allergic reaction to Ozone injections?

No. It is impossible to be allergic to Oxygen/Ozone. Ozone is an energized form of oxygen. It is formed naturally by the sun as well as by lightning storms. White blood cells also produce Ozone to help fight infections. Without the Ozone layer in our atmosphere, life could not exist on our planet as we know it.

Are Ozone procedures covered by most insurance?

Ozone injection treatments are considered alternative and are not covered by medical insurance. However, the initial evaluation is covered. Our office will discuss the fees with you if an Ozone treatment is recommended.

Do I have to stop any medications before ozone injections?

Vitamin C. It is important to stop Vitamin C supplements two days prior to and one day after the procedure. That only includes Vitamin C supplements, not foods containing Vitamin C. Vitamin C strongly binds to the active ozone molecule rendering it less bioactive. Therefore, in order to obtain the full benefit from the ozone injection procedure, it should be discontinued as above. This is more important for ozone disc injections and does not significantly affects ozone joint or muscle injections.

Blood Thinners and Aspirin. For ozone disc injection procedures, blood thinners (for example Plavix®, Xarelto® and Coumadin®), aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (ex: ibuprofen, Naprosyn) should be stopped 5 days prior to the procedure. It is important to first consult your cardiologist or primary medical doctor to determine whether it is okay to stop your medications. Do not just stop them on your own without checking with your doctor since it may be harmful to your health. Other compounds that may thin out the blood, such as Vitamin E, garlic supplements (does not apply to garlic in food), fish oil, ginseng and ginkgo biloba should also be stopped 5 days prior to the procedure.

For ozone muscle and ozone joint injections, you do not have to stop blood thinners, aspirin or anticoagulants. For muscle and joint injections, if you are on any form of blood thinner medications, you may develop a “black and blue” after the procedure but it does not affect the outcome.

Do I need to fast before the procedure?

You must not eat 6 hours prior to an ozone disc injection procedure. If you are a diabetic, please inform our office and special arrangements will be made for you. You may eat after the procedure. This does not apply to ozone joint and muscle injections. For these types of ozone injection procedures, there is no need to fast.

Can I work or exercise after the ozone injection procedure?

For ozone muscle and joint injections, you can go back to work the same day after the procedure as long as you do not have a job that requires frequent or heavy lifting. Exercise, physical therapy and lifting, other than usual activates of daily living, should not be performed until 24 hours after the procedure. However, you have to listen to your body. If you are sore and do not feel up to increasing you activity after 24 hours, it is advisable to keep your activity level low.

For ozone disc injections, you should not work the day after the procedure. Avoid handling any weight over 20 pounds within the first 48 hours. Also avoid repetitive bending, stooping, exercise or physical therapy for 48 hours. After 48 hours, you can slowly return to those activities. You can resume chiropractic treatment 3 days after the procedure.

I live outside the Tri-state area and I am interested in Ozone injections. How should I proceed?

Dr. Bleiweiss’ main office is in Caldwell, NJ, approximately 20 miles west of New York City. If you live a plane ride away, you have the option of sending all your pertinent medical records to our office.  Our office will contact you after a preliminary review to discuss whether ozone injection therapy is a good non-surgical solution for your pain condition, prior to your visit to our office for a thorough physical evaluation and testing.