This non-surgical therapy is an injection of a concentrated mixture of the patient's own blood. PRP injections have been shown to relieve acute and chronic pain and accelerate healing of injured tissues and joints.

PRP Therapy Summary Introduction

What is it?

Platelet activation plays a key role in the process of wound and soft tissue healing. The use of platelet rich plasma (PRP), a portion of the patient’s own blood having a platelet concentration above baseline, to promote healing of injured tendons, ligaments, muscles, and joints, can be applied to various musculoskeletal problems.

How does it works

Platelet activation plays a key role in the process of wound and soft tissue healing. The use of platelet rich plasma (PRP), a portion of the patient’s own blood having a platelet concentration above baseline, to promote healing of injured tendons, ligaments, muscles, and joints, can be applied to various musculoskeletal problems.

Is it effective?

Several clinical studies have demonstrated that PRP injections have improved function and decreased pain to various maladies, including - but not limited to - elbow, wrist, shoulder, hip, knee, and ankle tendonosis. Early work is also showing promise for osteoarthritis.

What are the side effects?

The side effects of PRP injections are very limited as the patient is utilizing their own blood, which they should have no reaction to. Some relative rest is needed immediately following the procedure, then usually followed by a progressive stretching and strengthening program.

What is Platelet Rich Plasma?

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is super-physiologically concentrated platelets and growth factors that stimulate healing and regeneration of injured tissues, muscles, tendons or ligaments. PRP is derived from your own body and is 100% natural. PRP injections are an increasingly popular alternative to surgery because of the great results patients of all ages are obtaining. Whether you are an elite athlete or a “Weekend Warrior,” regenerative therapies, including PRP, are an effective and safe nonsurgical therapy to treat forms of acute and chronic pain.

Treat Your Condition With Platelet Rich Plasma

PRP therapy procedures can treat a wide variety of conditions including but not limited to:

  • Back and neck pain
  • Tennis and golfer’s elbow
  • Arthritis of the joints
  • Rotator cuff injuries
  • Foot and ankle pain
  • Ligament, cartilage, & tendon injuries

If your condition is not listed please contact us at 907-373-9460 to see if PRP therapy is the best treatment option for you.

Where does platelet rich plasma (PRP) come from?

To harvest PRP, a small sample of your blood is drawn into a specialized collecting system. This blood is centrifuged at high speeds to isolate the growth factors and platelets. Because your own blood is used, there is no risk of a transmissible infection, and a low risk of allergic reaction.

What should I expect from PRP treatment?

PRP is a safe, non-surgical procedure that stimulates healing and treats acute and chronic pain. Although recovery times can vary, patients generally begin to see improvement in pain and mobility within 4 to 6 weeks. Improvement will continue for up to 12 months. The cost of a PRP treatment varies based on your specific treatment needs

Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy

PRP’s natural healing process intensifies the body’s efforts by delivering a higher concentration of platelets and regenerative growth factors directly into the area in need.

Platelet rich plasma is a very simple and safe nonsurgical procedure that is performed by a qualified physician. It’s easy as 1, 2, 3!

Step 1

A small sample of your blood is drawn and collected into a special device.

Step 2

The special device is then centrifuged at a high speed, two separate times, to isolate the purest PRP.

Step 3

Once the PRP has been isolated, it is ready to be injected into your affected site. It is carefully injected using refined techniques to ensure advanced healing and regeneration.

Before treatment:

  • Your initial visit to the clinic will consist of a full physical assessment based on injury or physical complaint which may include x-rays, diagnostic ultrasound, blood work, Range of Motion measurements, MRI if needed.
  • If taking NSAID’s( anti-inflammatory medication ie: Motrin, Naprosyn, Advil, Aleve) please discontinue 5-7 days prior to treatment. If taking an 81mg Aspirin, continue.
  • Follow you normal daily routine on procedure day, make sure to drink plenty of water.
  • The procedure takes approximately 1 hr to perform.
  • Upon arriving at the clinic your blood will be drawn and you will be prep’d for your procedure. Your blood will be spun down in a special centrifuge which takes about 15 minutes.
  • Ultrasound will be used to guide where the Dr. will treat, those areas will be marked and numbed with local anesthesia.
  • After 10 minutes you will be asked to test the areas of pain by walking, running, going up and down stairs, moving your limb in range of motion. If you are pain free, then your Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) will be injected into the same areas that have been anesthetized.

After treatment with PRP:

  • You will be numb in the areas treated for 2-4 hrs after the procedure.
  • Due to the numbness we ask that you refrain from any strenuous activities but to stay mobile.
  • After the anesthesia wears off you may resume activities to tolerance of pain.
  • You will experience some pain and soreness for 2-5 days after your treatment. The initial inflammatory phase last 7 days and secondary phase can last 14 days.
  • No anti-inflammatory medication (Ibuprofen, Motrin, Aleve) should be used for 4-6 wks after treatment.
  • Tylenol for pain, Ice as needed for pain and or swelling (10-20 minutes to cool the skin, repeat every 2-3 hours)
  • Follow the 10% rule and the FIT principles for returning to activities to decrease the incident of re-injury and to increase the healing potential.
  • Follow a program for flexibility and core strength to rehabilitate and correct any imbalances in the kinetic chain.
  • You may experience the “roller coaster” syndrome where you feel great one day and for no apparent reason the area treated starts to hurt again, this is normal in the healing process.
  • The platelets are active for several weeks and it can take up to 6 months for normal collagen to form and heal completely.
  • Our goal is 80 % improvement in pain, so you may or may not need more than 1 treatment to reach that goal. Sometime a series of 2-3 treatments are needed to achieve complete healing. If subsequent treatments are needed they are usually performed 4-6 weeks apart.

RP-Post Procedure Guidelines

What to expect after a PRP injection:

  • Once the local anesthetic wears off, the area surrounding the injection site will likely be throbbing and aching. Remember, the theory behind platelet-rich plasma injections is using platelets to trick your body into thinking you just injured yourself, therefore triggering a regenerative response from your body. This will hopefully replace chronic inflammation with a short period of acute inflammation and will also stabilize the tissues in the affected area.
  • The area may be aching and throbbing for at least 24 hours, and this could last for up to one week.
  • If the pain is causing you trouble sleeping, you can use Tylenol or your prescribed pain medication (See Medication Guidelines below).
  • It is common and expected to also feel an achy and stiff sensation of fullness at the injection site that may last for several days. The fullness is due to the platelet gel forming a matrix that takes up space within the tissue.
  • In the weeks following the injection we typically hear that people have good and bad days. Remember, this is not a steroid injection, which tends to show a rapid effect. Most of our patients see the most benefit approximately 4-6 weeks post injection. We ask that you contact our office at the 4 week mark in order to schedule a follow up of your progress, if a follow up appointment has not already been scheduled.

Medication Guidelines

  • For a minimum of two weeks post-injection, it is important for the efficacy of the treatment that all anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDS) are discontinued. Tylenol (Acetaminophen) and Celebrex are also OK to take, but we ask that you avoid other NSAIDS such as aspirin, Naproxen (Aleve) and Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) because they will inhibit platelet function. Other prescription medication should be reviewed with your procedure physician.

Activity Guidelines

  • For the first two weeks, we encourage you to resume normal day-to-day activities and light exercises such as spinning a stationary bike with little resistance. Controlled and moderate movement is important for the proper stimulation of tissues to rebuild in a linear and physiologic fashion. However, we strongly advise that you avoid heavy lifting or high exercise levels because these activities will compromise the progress we are trying to make.
  • After two weeks, you are cleared by your physician to resume exercising the area. However, we ask that you gradually increase the intensity of you workouts so as not to re-injure the tissue. Use pain in the area of injection as a guide to how far you push yourself. This is not like physical therapy after surgery; we do not want you to push through the pain. Instead, ease off the intensity if the pain persists.
  • If you feel any of the following symptoms immediately contact your office: Prolonged redness, swelling, fevers, chills, muscle weakness as well as numbness and/or tingling.

Additional injections

  • Depending upon how the tissue reacts to the initial PRP injection you may need an additional injection. An evaluation will be done to see if the tissue is responding before a second procedure is planned. Your treatment plan will be discussed in detail following your injection.

Works Cited

Pettine, Murphy, & Suzuki. (2014, September 3). Percutaneous Injection of Autologous Bone Marrow Concentrate. Stem Cells Express. Kloth, D. S. (2012). Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy. 8.

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