PRP is a form of regenerative medicine that uses a person's own blood to promote healing and relieve pain. The blood is drawn from the patient and then placed in a centrifuge to separate the platelets, which are rich in growth factors. The concentrated platelets are then injected back into the patient's body at the…
Knee Therapy Treatment Options: PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma)
Wonder how PRP can help persistent knee pain? This is a debilitating condition that keeps many people from fully enjoying their lives. Knee pain is usually caused by cartilage pathology, ligament or meniscal injuries, and osteoarthritis is treated with anti-inflammatories, physical therapy, cortisone injections and surgery. When traditional treatments do not successfully manage symptoms of knee pain, Platelet Rich Plasma, or PRP, may be a better option.
What is PRP?
Blood contains platelets, which are best known for their ability to assist in blood clotting. Platelets also contain proteins called growth factors. PRP extracts the patient’s own blood and uses a centrifuge to separate the plasma from the rest of the blood cells.
The process increases the concentration of platelets, which are then re-inserted into the plasma. Injections of platelet-rich plasma are injected into injured areas to accelerate the healing of injured ligaments, tendons or joints. The PRP injection releases growth factors to support healing by increasing the number of reparative cells that your body creates.
How effective is it?
Compared to other treatment options, PRP is a low-pain and low-risk procedure. In summarizing early research, Medical News Today states that some studies show improvements greater than a placebo effect, but patients may need follow-up treatment to keep experiencing relief. Overall, PRP has minimal side effects and is a safe, less invasive alternative to knee surgery. Because PRP injections use the patient’s own blood, there is a lower risk for an allergic reaction or adverse response than with other injections.
What to expect
The PRP injection may be painful depending on the exact location and condition of the joint. Deep breathing is important for relaxation during the injection, which typically only takes a few minutes.
There are important steps to take after PRP to increase its effectiveness and prevent side effects. A cold compress and elevating the knee will decrease swelling and pain after the injection. After the surgery, avoid taking anti-inflammatory medications and ease up on exercises that stress the knee joint. It may be necessary to wear a splint or use crutches to stabilize the joint. It is imperative to adhere to all guidelines from the doctor after PRP injection.
Who should consider PRP?
PRP can be a valuable option for those who cannot manage symptoms of osteoarthritis with conventional methods. PRP may also be ideal for other conditions that cause knee pain, including patellar tendonitis, meniscal injuries and ligament damage.
However, PRP may not be the best solution for every person. Since it is still a relatively new treatment option with limited research, it is not always covered by insurance. Patients should work closely with their doctor to determine if PRP is the best option for their knee pain.
Find out if PRP is right for you
PRP can alleviate knee pain from conditions like osteoarthritis when conventional treatments fall short. With minimal side effects and invasion, PRP injection can reduce crippling knee pain. Do not suffer any longer. Simply click the link below to set up a consultation.
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