MidAmerica Orthopaedics now offers Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy. This therapy can help injured joints and other problems. It uses parts of your own blood to reduce pain and speed up healing.
Can it Help Me?
PRP may help if you have:
- meniscus tears in your knee
- rotator cuff tears in your shoulder
- plantar fasciitis in your foot
- injuries in your spine, hip or elbow
Benefits of PRP
Parts of your body have a hard time healing. For example, ligaments and tendons (they connect bones and muscles) do not get much blood from the body. Sprains and strains of these tissues heal slowly. PRP uses your own blood to speed up the healing in these areas.
How It Works
The process begins with a sample of your blood. It is spun around in a centrifuge. This separates it into platelets, plasma, and red and white blood cells. The platelets are then concentrated and mixed with some of the plasma. This mixture is called "platelet rich plasma." The doctor injects this into the site of your injury.
After the injection, your immune system (the system that keeps your body healthy) reacts quickly. Special white blood cells called "macrophages" rush in. They take away damaged cells. They help prep the site for healing. Then, stem cells and other cells begin to multiply. Over time, they repair and rebuild the injured tissues.
The PRP process is quick. You can go home the same day. It may help your injury heal faster. PRP can help treat and eliminate the cause of your pain. Some people need more than one treatment before they heal completely.
PRP for the Management of Osteoarthritis of the Hip and Knee
If you are looking for alternative ways to treat your hip or knee joint pain, you may consider PRP injections. Studies are being done on the effectiveness and results of using PRP injections to treat osteoarthritis.
In an article by the AAHKS Patient and Public Relations Committee and the AAHKS Evidence Based Medicine Committee, they reported on a paper "that combined the results of ten prior studies where PRP was used for the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee."
What it found was that "compared with injections of saline as the placebo, patients injected with PRP experienced better pain relief and functional improvement up to one year following the injection. When compared with injections of hyaluronic acid (HA – a commonly given injection for arthritis), PRP had small but real improvements in pain relief a year after the injections.1"
For more information on how PRP could be used for the management of hip and knee osteoarthritis, please visit: American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons - PRP for the Management of Osteoarthritis of the Hip and Knee.
1. PRP | American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons. (2017). Aahks.org. Retrieved 3 March 2017, from http://www.aahks.org/care-for-hips-and-knees/prp-for-the-management-of-osteoarthritis-of-the-hip-and-knee/