FAQ’s Concerning Platelet Rich Plasma
What is platelet-rich plasma?
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) comes from a patient’s own blood. A centrifuge separates the various blood components by spinning it very fast for 15 minutes, concentrating the platelets into plasma. Concentrated platelets are rich in growth factors and bioactive proteins, which are vital to initiation and acceleration of tissue repair and regeneration.
Bioactive proteins elevate the production of stem cells. This helps with connective tissue healing, bone regeneration, bone repair, promotion of new blood vessel development, and stimulation of wound healing processes.
How does PRP heal tendons and ligaments?
Overuse and damage to tendons, over prolonged time periods, cause collagen fibers to develop small tears (a condition called tendonitis). Often, tendonitis develops in frequently moved joints such as elbows, shoulders, wrists, knees, ankles, hips, and the spine.
Damage occurs when the ligament is no longer capable of stabilizing affected joints, and this typically results in pain. Instability of ligaments can result from injuries and wear and tear. Since tendons and ligaments have relatively poor blood supplies, healing is difficult to achieve when there is damage. Insufficient healing, coupled with daily wear and tear, results in joint degeneration, chronic pain, and weakness.
What PRP therapy offers is the growth factors necessary to heal the damage, reduce pain and very often the ability to avoid surgery. When PRP is injected, it acts as an attractant for stem cells in the body. These stem cells migrate into the area and help regenerate the damaged tissue.
What are potential benefits from PRP therapy?
With PRP therapy, patients can see remarkable symptomatic relief and significant return to normal functioning. These results may eliminate the requirements for other treatment methods, such as medications or surgery.
Multiple recent studies published from Hospital for Special Surgery and the American Journal of Sports Medicine have shown pain relief for joint arthritis and soft tissue conditions such as tennis elbow.
Arthritis patients achieve tremendous relief with PRP therapy injections, with the HSS study showing no cartilage degeneration for a year on serial MRI’s. In the elbow tendonitis study, over 90% of patients avoided surgery, and these were patients who had NO other treatment options left!
How many PRP treatments are necessary?
Individual responses to PRP therapy vary. Typically, people require anywhere from two to five injections, administered every four to six weeks. There is no maximum number of PRP injections. There are no steroids involved so that risk is irrelevant. Also, any risks and side effects are not dependant on the total number of injections given.
Who should not have PRP therapy?
Anyone who has active cancer or an infection should not have PRP injections. Cured cancer patients may be able to receive them, on the advice of their oncologist. Patients who are currently on anticoagulant medications should stop three to five days beforehand.
When can regular activities be resumed?
While PRP injections can assist with tendon and ligament healing, results are not immediate. Since platelet-rich plasma treatments stimulate new tissue growth, they need time and rehabilitation. Under a doctor’s strict supervision, patients can gradually start an exercise program after the first injection. During the process of treatments, most individuals will be able to resume normal exercise and daily activities.
What Conditions Benefit from PRP Therapy?
Here is a partial list of the conditions PRP helps considerably.
- Golfer’s elbow
- Tennis elbow
- Shoulder tendinitis and Rotator Cuff Injury
- Joint arthritis – hip, spine, knee, ankle, SI joint, elbow, wrist
- Headaches – Migraines, Occipital Neuralgia
- Soft Tissue Injury – Tendonitis, meniscus tears in the knee, ligament sprains.
- Sacroiliac Joint Pain
- Ankle sprains
- Achilles tendonitis
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Muscle tears
If you or a loved one is suffering from joint or soft tissue pain, then PRP Therapy may allow you to obtain pain relief and avoid surgery. Call Physician First Choice today for treatment with Stem Cell Doctors who have over 2 decades experience in these procedures!
Call (888) 988-0515 for more information and scheduling today.