Some Frequently Asked Questions
PRP otherwise known as Platelet Rich Plasma is blood plasma that has been harvested from the patient’s own blood and enriched with platelets, generally by centrifugation techniques. PRP Therapy is an innovative treatment in an emerging field referred to as Ortho-biologics or autologous engineering, or the merging of cutting-edge technology with the body’s natural ability to heal itself. PRP Therapy contains and releases by degranulation, numerous growth factors and cytokines (cell signaling factors) that can stimulate the healing of bone and other soft tissues.
The growth factors and cytokines present in PRP are:
- platelet-derived growth factor
- transforming growth factor beta
- fibroblast growth factor
- insulin-like growth factor 1
- insulin-like growth factor 2
- vascular endothelial growth factor
- epidermal growth factor
- interleukin 8
- keratinocyte growth factor
- connective tissue growth factor
Patients can see a significant improvement in symptoms and pain relief. This may eliminate the need for more aggressive treatments such as long-term medication or surgery, as well as a remarkable return of joint functioning.
The body’s first response to soft tissue injury is to deliver platelets. Packed with growth and healing factors, platelets initiate repair and recruit stem cells to the site of injury. PRP therapy’s natural healing process intensifies the body’s efforts by delivering a higher concentration of platelets to the site of injury. During PRP therapy, a small sample of your blood is drawn (similar to a lab test sample) and placed in a centrifuge that spins the blood at high speeds, separating the platelets from the other blood components. The concentrated platelet rich plasma (PRP) is then injected into and around the point of injury, jump-starting and significantly strengthening the body’s natural healing signal. Since your own blood is used there is no risk of transmissible infectious agents and no risk of immune rejection.
The procedure takes approximately two hours, including preparation and recovery time. PRP therapy is performed safely at the medical office and relieves pain without the risks of surgery, a prolonged recovery, general anesthesia, or hospital stays.
The goal of PRP therapy is to resolve pain through healing; therefore, it could prove to have long-lasting results. Initial improvement may be seen within a few weeks, gradually increasing as the healing progresses. Research studies and clinical practice have shown PRP therapy to be very effective at relieving pain. Through ultrasound and MRI images it has been proven that PRP therapy results in tissue repair. The need for surgery can also be greatly reduced by treating injured tissues before the damage progresses and the condition is irreversible.