Laurie's Blogs.


Mar 2024

What is Mesotherapy?

Laurie Edge-Hughes, BScPT, MAnimSt, CAFCI, CCRT, Cert. Sm. Anim. Acup / Dry Needling


Mesotherapy in veterinary medicine involves the injection of medications, vitamins, minerals, and other substances into specific points on an animal's body. This technique is primarily used for therapeutic purposes, such as pain management, anti-inflammatory treatment, wound healing, and skin rejuvenation.  It is a medical technique that originated in human medicine and has been adapted for veterinary use. Mesotherapy was developed in France in the 1950s by Dr. Michel Pistor as a minimally invasive way to deliver medications and other substances directly into the skin's mesoderm layer (the middle layer of the skin) for therapeutic purposes. 


Initially, mesotherapy was primarily used in human medicine for cosmetic purposes, such as cellulite reduction and skin rejuvenation, as well as for pain management and the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions. Over time, its applications expanded to include a wide range of medical conditions.


In veterinary medicine, mesotherapy has been adopted as a treatment modality to provide targeted relief for various conditions affecting animals, including musculoskeletal injuries, osteoarthritis, skin disorders, and chronic pain.


Some of the conditions that may benefit from mesotherapy include:


Osteoarthritis: Mesotherapy can be used to deliver anti-inflammatory medications, pain relievers, and joint-supporting substances directly into the affected joints, providing targeted relief and improving mobility.


Musculoskeletal injuries: Injuries such as strains, sprains, and muscle tears can be treated with mesotherapy to reduce inflammation, promote tissue repair, and alleviate pain at the site of injury.


Chronic pain management: Mesotherapy can help manage chronic pain conditions in animals, such as back pain, neck pain, and neuropathic pain, by delivering analgesic medications directly to the affected area.


Skin disorders: Veterinary mesotherapy can be used to treat various skin conditions, including allergies, dermatitis, and wounds. Medications and nutrients can be injected directly into the skin to promote healing, reduce inflammation, and improve skin health.


Wound healing: Mesotherapy can accelerate wound healing in animals by delivering growth factors, vitamins, and other healing substances directly to the wound site, promoting tissue regeneration and reducing the risk of infection.


Scar reduction: Mesotherapy may also be used to minimize the appearance of scars in animals by promoting collagen remodeling and tissue regeneration at the site of injury or surgery.


Some of the common substances used in mesotherapy for animals include:


Medications: This may include anti-inflammatory drugs (such as corticosteroids or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), pain relievers (such as opioids or local anesthetics), antibiotics, and other pharmaceuticals targeted at treating specific conditions.


Vitamins and minerals: Essential nutrients such as vitamins (e.g., vitamin B complex, vitamin C) and minerals (e.g., calcium, magnesium) can be injected to support overall health, promote tissue repair, and enhance immune function.


Homeopathic remedies: Some veterinarians may use homeopathic substances in mesotherapy, such as Arnica montana, to help manage pain, inflammation, and wound healing.


Hyaluronic acid: Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance found in the body's connective tissues and synovial fluid. In mesotherapy, it may be injected to support joint health, improve lubrication, and reduce inflammation in animals with osteoarthritis or joint injuries.


Growth factors: Certain growth factors, such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) or autologous conditioned serum (ACS), may be used in mesotherapy to promote tissue regeneration, accelerate wound healing, and enhance musculoskeletal repair.


Plant extracts and botanicals: Herbal extracts and botanical substances with anti-inflammatory, analgesic, or antioxidant properties (e.g., aloe vera, chamomile, calendula) may be incorporated into mesotherapy formulations to provide additional therapeutic benefits.



This sounds like a therapy with lots of potential.  Clearly more research is needed, but I look forward to hearing more about this therapy in the years to come.



To learn more, check out the following articles:

  1. Alves JC, Santos A, Jorge P, Lafuente P. A multiple-session mesotherapy protocol for the management of hip osteoarthritis in police working dogs. Am J Vet Res. 2022 Nov 16;84(1):ajvr.22.08.0132.  
  2. Alves JC, Dos Santos AM, Fernandes ÂD. Evaluation of the effect of mesotherapy in the management of back pain in police working dog. Vet Anaesth Analg. 2018 Jan;45(1):123-128. 
  3. Alves J, Jorge P, Santos A. Comparison of Two Mesotherapy Protocols in the Management of Back Pain in Police Working Dogs: A Retrospective Study. Top Companion Anim Med. 2021 Jun;43:100519. 
  4. Alves JC, Santos A, Jorge P, Lafuente P. Multiple session mesotherapy for management of coxofemoral osteoarthritis pain in 10 working dogs: A case series. Can Vet J. 2022 Jun;63(6):597-602.  
  5. Faetani L, Ghizzoni D, Ammendolia A, Costantino C. Safety and efficacy of mesotherapy in musculoskeletal disorders: A systematic review of randomized controlled trials with meta-analysis. J Rehabil Med. 2021 Apr 27;53(4):jrm00182.