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In addition to addressing painful joint and muscle issues, studies have shown that PRP holds great promise for managing knee osteoarthritis. In fact, in a study conducted by the Hospital for Special Surgery, the treatment improved pain and function in up to 73% of patients. The study also showed a delay in the progression of osteoarthritis in those studied.
As an alternative to surgery, PRP therapy is less invasive and relatively inexpensive treatment of pain caused by acute and chronic injuries. PRP therapy has been used for over 20 years to treat a wide range of health issues including:
- Osteoarthritis of the knee, shoulder, hip & spine
- ACL injuries
- Pelvic Pain & Instability
- Tennis Elbow
- Ankle Sprains
- Chronic lower back pain
- Spinal stenosis
- Tennis elbow
- Rotator cuff tears
- Knee osteoarthritis
- Achilles tendinitis
- Plantar fasciitis
- Neck pain
- Medical collateral ligament tears (MCL)
- Acute & chronic tendon problems
- Injuries to ligaments and muscles
Many patients require just two treatments, but some patients require more. Patients are usually evaluated to see how they will respond to injection. More serious injuries often require additional treatments. Some patients feel immediate results, but treatment can take about six weeks to take effect.
Research in the field of PRP increased significantly in the 1990s thanks to declining cost of equipment. In the early 2000s PRP expanded to orthopedics to help in the healing of bone grafts and fractures. Success in these tests led to PRP use in sports medicine in connective tissue repair.
Platelet rich plasma therapy is an all-natural way to heal damaged joints and soft tissue in order to alleviate chronic pain. When a tissue injury occurs, platelets collect in the body at the injury site to begin repair. In PRP therapy, a sample of your blood is drawn then spun in centrifuge to concentrate platelets. Once platelets have been concentrated, they are injected into the injured area delivering a powerful mixture of growth factors where you need them most.
This then activates growth factors in stem cells to help repair the tissue, if possible, calm osteoarthritic symptoms and decrease inflammation. Your body’s natural healing process is advanced, and tissues are restored.
What to Expect
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy can be used to treat patients of all ages. Whether you are a professional athlete or a person suffering from chronic joint pain, PRP could help relieve pain symptoms. Call to schedule an appointment today to find out if you qualify.
First, your physician will run tests to pinpoint the exact location of the pain site. Next, a local anesthetic is applied to the injection site to numb the area. Finally, the PRP is injected into the area, sending natural healers to restore tissues. The treatment takes approximately one to two hours, including preparation and recovery.
Unlike conventional surgery, patients who use PRP therapy:
- Have a short recovery time – most patients return to work and usual activities following the procedure
- Avoid general anesthesia – which causes side effects and can be dangerous. Instead we use a local anesthetic.
- No hospital stay – patients are in and out of our office in one to two hours
Risks & Side Effects
Side effects of PRP therapy include pain in the injured area, infection, allergic reaction, blood clot and skin discoloration. If your body rejects the treatment it can cause an allergic reaction. Blood clots form when there is damage to the lining of a blood vessel. Since a needle is used in PRP therapy there is a chance an artery or vein could be damaged in the process potentially creating a blood clot. In some cases the PRP injection area will appear bruised. If bruising becomes deep and dark see your doctor.
Hss.edu: “Platelet-rich Plasma (PRP) Treatment Shows Potential for Knee Osteoarthritis
Borrione P, Gianfrancesco AD, Pereira MT, Pigozzi F (2010). “Platelet-rich plasma in muscle healing”. Am J Phys Med Rehabil 89 (10): 854–61.
Yu W, Wang J, Yin J (2011). “Platelet-Rich Plasma: A Promising Product for Treatment of Peripheral Nerve Regeneration After Nerve Injury”.Int J Neurosci 121 (4): 176–180.
Prolotherapy.com: “Platelet Rich Plasma Prolotherapy.”