Platelet Rich Plasma TreatmentIf you’re suffering from joint or spine pain, consider next-generation innovative treatment options from Praxis to reduce pain and help you return to activity.
The Alternative To Surgery
Your body is full of living cells, some that act as repairmen of the body. As we age or get injured, we sometimes can’t get enough of these critical repair cells to the area. Praxis PRP Treatments work to increase the concentration of your body’s own healing agents and stimulate the natural healing response in your injured or degenerative area.
Patients benefit from less downtime, less pain, and faster recovery than invasive surgical procedures.
What is Platelet Rich Plasma?
Platelet Rich Plasma or PRP for short, is a biologic therapy using a concentration of an individual’s own (autologous) platelets. Following a simple blood draw, red and white blood cells are separated from the platelets and plasma which are then concentrated to 5-8 times baseline using a centrifuge in the clinic. The platelets express protein growth factors and cytokines such as PDGF, TGF-β, VEGF, EGF, IGF-I, FGF, and HGF. These proteins are thought to promote healing by activating several pathways including balanced inflammation, angiogenesis, and attraction of mesenchymal stem cells that grow tissue.
Why use PRP?
Published research data for PRP has been mixed, largely due to variations of PRP preparations used. In vitro and in vivo studies using leukocyte poor PRP are generally favorable in demonstrating PRP’s anabolic and anti-inflammatory effects on injured soft tissues such as ligaments and tendons. The strongest data for PRP is for the treatment of knee tendinopathy and lateral epicodylitis (“tennis elbow”). PRP is also used by orthopedic and dental surgeons to promote bone healing.
Intra articular joint injections of PRP for osteoarthritis is also compelling and there are studies demonstrating the efficacy of PRP to improve symptoms and functional status of individuals with knee osteoarthritis. Tissue Growth Factor-β (TGF-β) is an important protein expressed in PRP that can promote chondrocyte proliferation and suppress the inflammation that perpetuates cartilage loss. PRP is also rich in alpha 2 macrogobilin, (A2M) a protein that inhibits matrix matelloproteinases that are implicated as sources of cartilage destruction in osteo and rheumatoid arthritis. PRP has not been shown to regenerate cartilage and the chondroprotective effect of PRP is likely similar in duration to the symptom relief provided. Contrasted to the use of steroids and NSAIDs that can increase one’s risk for cardiovascular, endocrine, gastrointestinal, or kidney disease, PRP is a compelling treatment for arthritis.
Is PRP Safe?
Although no therapy is without risk, PRP is very safe for most people. Because PRP is derived from one’s own blood, there is no risk for allergic reaction or transfer of communicable disease from another donor. Individuals allergic to local anesthetics may receive PRP without the anesthetic. Anytime the surface of the skin is broken, there is a potential for infection however the real risk of this happening during a PRP injection is extremely low as aseptic techniques are used and PRP confers antimicrobial effects.
Mild to moderate swelling is not unusual and typically resolves 72 hours after a PRP injection. This is not an adverse reaction but rather a sign that the immune system has been activated.
Who could benefit from PRP & who is not a good candidate for PRP
Patients with soft tissue injuries including tendonitis, tendonosis, partial ligament tears (sprains), muscle tears, and osteoarthritis are the primary beneficiaries of PRP. Less common uses for PRP include hair growth stimulation and reduced scarring with wound healing. To undergo a PRP injection, patients should have normal blood counts (RBCs, WBCs, Platelets), normal immune function, and not be actively using anti-inflammatory medications. Factors that may reduce a response to PRP include use of immune modulating medications, inadequately controlled diabetes, excessive alcohol use, and the age of an injury.