FAQ’s on Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injection is a treatment that utilizes the patient’s own platelet enriched plasma to promote the body’s natural abilities, resulting in speedier restorative healing.
What can be gained and what are the goals, expectations and hope when a patient receives Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections?
The goal of Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections is to speed the healing process. A patient can reasonably expect a faster healing period after sustaining an injury by receiving Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections. This is due to the large amount of growth hormones found within the platelets of the blood, which once separated from the rest of the plasma will be formed into an injectable. This, once injected, helps stimulate the injured area for a better recovery process.
How is Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injection procedures performed?
The first step is to draw between one and thee tubes of blood from the patient. The patient’s blood is then separated into its components by spinning it within a centrifuge. The platelet rich blood plasma forms a layer at the tube of the tube once spun, where it is collected for the procedure. This platelet rich plasma portion of the blood contains components that are essential for the promotion of healing.
When the platelet rich plasma has been collected and treated it is then injected directly into the injured area, usually a tendon or ligament, often with the aid of ultrasound guidance to assure accurate placement of the injection. The patient must then have a period of inactivity after the injections after which they will begin a rehabilitation program to complete their recovery.
What risk or side effects may occur with Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections?
Due to being a fairly new procedure, and only having recent use and limited study, there are no known negative side effects from Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections. There is no risk of a blood complication as the blood used is the patients. Complications from the administering of the injection may include bruising, bleeding and/or infection, and/or an increase in pain and/or inflammation at the injection site. Some, or all of these, minor side effects can occur.
What conditions are treatable with Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections?
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections have been used in operating rooms for decades to promote wound healing and to stimulate bone formation after spinal fusion surgery. More recently Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injection therapy has been used to treat overuse injuries of ligaments and tendons and other soft tissue injuries. A large factor of why PRP is quickly becoming the chosen treatment method for tendons and ligaments is that they do not normally have a good supply of blood on their own, which leads into difficulty with the natural healing process of the body.
How long do the effects of Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections last?
The intended effect of the Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injection is to promote the body’s natural restorative healing process. The injection is not of long lasting duration but rather the effect of the injection, that is the healing it promotes, is long lasting or permanent. It is possible for those patients who find success with this injection to have further PRP therapy injections to maintain the provided relief.
What is the success rate of Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections in the relief of pain?
Due to the relative newness of Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injection therapy the full benefits of the treatment is not known. However it is believed that the procedure does promote healing. If an injury heals then there is no pain, so conclusively it could be said that Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections are effective in stopping pain from an injury by promoting the accelerated healing of that injury.