Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Treatment: An Overview
1. What is platelet rich plasma?
Platelet-rich plasma represents platelets concentrated from whole blood combined with plasma. Platelets are very small cells that travel through the blood stream. They are directly involved with the body’s clotting system. Inside the platelets are proteins that activate the coagulation system to stop bleeding. During the coagulation cycle, platelets release several different factors that enhance local reconstruction of the damaged tissue and decrease the local inflammation associated with injury. Together, these start the process of healing.
2. How does the treatment work?
When PRP is injected into the site of tissue injury such as an arthritic joint, tendonitis, or muscle damage, they release growth and anti-inflammatory proteins contained within the cell. These proteins result in reduction of inflammation and initiation of cellular regrowth, repairing and restoring the affected tissue. The process is localized to the injected area so there is concentration of healing factors at the site of injury. This accelerates healing times by 50%.
3. Is PRP treatment effective?
Yes. There are a multitude of clinical studies that have shown injury recovery being sped up over injuries not treated with PRP. The platelets contain various proteins that improve cell proliferation, blood vessel growth, and tissue healing. Clinical studies of tissue repair have found recovery times being reduced by half. Since the PRP is derived from the patient’s own blood, there is no reactions or rejection and this makes the process very safe. Clinical studies have repeatedly revealed the superiority of PRP compared to corticosteroid injections on joint and tissue healing.
4. What conditions can be treated with PRP?
PRP has most often been examined for the treatment of a number of musculoskeletal conditions, including injury to tendon, ligament, cartilage, muscle, meniscus, and bone. Osteoarthritis of the knees and relief of tendonitis are the most often treated conditions There is data demonstrating a positive effect in the treatment of degenerative tendinopathy and other musculoskeletal conditions. Arthritic joints have revealed a slowing of the degenerative process, reduction of inflammation (and thus reduction of pain) while improving mobility, function, and quality of life.
In addition to musculoskeletal issues, PRP can be utilized in several other conditions including but not limited to:
Hair restoration, wound healing, reduction of urinary incontinence, improvement in erectile dysfunction, reduction of muscle spasms from inflammation, reduction of pain from inflammation. Combined with a technic of “microneedling”, PRP can be used for reduction of scars, keloid, stretch marks, and the smoothing of wrinkles and lines, especially those caused by sun damage and tobacco use. The latter takes advantage of the rebuilding of collagen by the platelet growth factors.
5. Are there any risks with PRP treatment?
The risks of PRP treatment are minimal, since the treatment is derived from the patient’s own blood, there is NO risk of a transmissible infection. There is a remote risk of infection from the blood aspiration or the injection at the treatment site. There is no risk of rejection or reaction.
6. Key points to remember:
● Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) comes from a patient’s own blood. It is taking advantage of a natural healing process.
● PRP is a concentrated source of growth factors and cellular signaling factors that play a significant role in the biology of healing.
● Studies show that PRP treatment improve healing of many tissues up to 50% faster than “regular” healing.
● PRP can be used to help improve many ailments and is a method of natural healing.
PRP has been recognized since the 1970’s and put into common practice in 1999.
https://www.bonejoint.net/blog/do-platelet-rich-plasma-injections-work/ https://painandhealing.com/what-is-prp-therapy/ https://www.hss.edu/playbook/does-platelet-rich-plasma-prp-really-work/ https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/platelet-rich-plasma-injections#1 https://www.activelifepaincenter.com/what-is-the-history-of-platelet-rich-plasma/