Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP)
Some of the most common components in blood are red cells, white cells and platelets. Platelets help in the process of blood clotting and contain hundreds of natural proteins, called “growth factors,” which help in healing. When platelets are separated from the red and white blood, the result is a concentrated solution of platelets referred to as Protein-Rich Plasma (PRP). Because of the high concentration of platelets in PRP, the solution contains up to ten-times the “healing proteins” that exist in regular blood.
The purpose of injecting PRP into damaged tissue is to stimulate the bodies’ natural healing process. PRP can provide a reduction in pain as well as accelerating the recovery process.
PRP appears most effective in treating chronic tendon injuries such as tennis elbow as well as tendinitis of the ankle and knee. Additional studies are underway to evaluate the effectiveness of PRP in treating arthritis, as well as accelerating the healing of broken bones.
The risks associated with PRP are minimal, however, a consultation with your medical provider is necessary to evaluate the risks and to determine if PRP is right for you. While patients that receive PRP treatment may experience temporary pain at the injection site, other side effects such as infection, nerve or tendon injuries appear to be no more common than when receiving a cortisone injection.
If you would like to discuss whether or not a PRP injection is right for, please contact our office and schedule a consultation with one of our medical providers.