Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy And Why You Need To Consider It Now.


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Platelet rich plasma, also called as "PRP", is a procure where’s e a patients blood is drawn and then spun and separated using a centrifuge, thus producing a concentration of platelets above the normal levels that would be found in the blood. Platelets are the cells that cause the clotting of our blood, but they also possess tremendous potential in enhancing the rapid healing of muscles, tendons, and ligaments in patients who may have aggravated injuries sustained during physical activity. There are many Studies that suggest that the growth factors which are released by platelets, may help improve and speed up the repairing of tissue, and accelerate the healing process by adding a higher concentration of growth factors and cytokines by creating a PRP sample.

PRP is often used in surgeries to assist the healing of shoulder rotator cuff, elbow, knee, ankle and Achilles tendon repair. PRP is also showing incredible promise with patients who get injections directly into their chronically injured tendons and ligaments when proper healing has not taken place. PRP can help accelerate the healing process where as prior, without PRP treatments, a patient may not fully heal at all. Several clinical trials have been conducted to determine the full spectrum of PRP’s use. Clinicians working in the field of spinal surgery and care have seen PRP show promising results when injected into spinal ligaments, into facet joints, and/or intervertebral discs when other traditional treatments have failed or had shown limited results. Patients with cervical pain often report drastic improvement in not just pain relief but function and mobility as well.

Human blood is composed of 93% red blood cells, 6% white blood cells, 1% platelets and plasma. The Platelets are best known for their ability to clot and to stop bleeding, however, they have a much more significant role in the process of healing, as human platelets are also a critical in tissue repair… The cytokines and growth factors in particular can cause a major increase in the rate and overall repairing of injured tissue.
Our body’s first response to the injury of tissue is to send platelets immediately into the damaged area. This causes swelling in the injured area. Platelets start the process of repair and attract other stem cells to the injury. By Injecting these growth factors into a patients damaged ligaments, tendons, and joints, we stimulate body’s natural process of  repairing the damaged cells. In order to maximize this process, the platelets have to be concentrated and separated from the red blood cells. In essence, we initiate the bodys natural response and induce swelling. The goal of PRP is to concentrate the number of platelets available while minimizing the number of red blood cells in a PRP solution that gets injected into the injury site.  In short, PRP creates, stimulates, and accelerates the natural healing process by using our own healing cells in greater concentration to speed up and complete the repair.


PRP therapy works best for chronic ligament and tendon sprains and strains that have not benefitted from other treatments, but we have seen tremendous progress and results in other conditions such as:
 • Lumbar spine disc pain
• Rotator cuff injuries, including partial-thickness
• Shoulder pain and instability
• Tennis and golfer’s elbow
• Hamstring and hip strains
• Knee sprains and instability
• Patellofemoral syndrome and patellar tendonitis
• Ankle sprains
• Achilles tendonitis & plantar fasciitis
• Knee, hip, and other joint osteoarthritis
• Nerve entrapment syndromes, such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
• (SI) joint dysfunction and pain
• Lumbar and cervical facet dysfunction and pain
Also, PRP has been shown to be effective for many cases of osteoarthritis by stimulating healing of cartilage and reducing pain and disability. which includes:
• Knee arthritis
• Hip joint arthritis
• Shoulder arthritis
• Ankle arthritis
• It has even been successfully used to treat hair loss and has regrown facial skin cells by stimulating both hair follicles and collagen producing cells as well. Some people refer to this as the vampire face lift. Whatever term you use, the success is remarkable.
The process of making a PRP sample for use in a patient is easy, painless, and conveniently executed during an office visit in one sitting. The whole process of drawing a blood sample and preparing the PRP solution usually only takes around 25-30 minutes. To start, a small amount of blood is drawn from a patient, the same way one would get a blood sample during their yearly physical with their primary care provider. Once the blood is drawn its then placed into a centrifuge which is a machine that spins the blood samples at high speed, which then separates the blood into red blood cells and concentrated platelets due to their difference in densities. Once separated the red blood cells are discarded, and we are left with concentrated platelet rich plasma (PRP) which is now ready to be used on the patient for the treatment process.
The process of injection doesn’t take very long. He longest part is waiting for the blood to spin and the PRP sample to be created and obtained. The platelet-rich portion is collected and re-injected back into the injured tendons, ligaments, muscles, joints, or discs that are not-healing correctly.. The number of injections vary based on each patient’s unique situation, injury and condition but usually range anywhere from two to six injections done over time. The physician may or may not use an ultrasound or radiology to guide the location of the injections. Many patients experience significant improvement after just one round and often don't even require a second or third treatment.

PRP injections are not typically painful; however the discomfort level depends on the which part of the body being treated. The physician will often numb the site of injection with a Topical Anesthetic.
Injections into the joint can cause minimal discomfort. There is sometimes a small amount of pain after the procedure; and stiffness in the area, however this doesn't last more than a couple of days. If need be, Tylenol can be used to alleviate the pain. Its important to note that prior to and directly after PRP, a patient needs to avoid anti-inflammatory drugs like Advil and ibuprofen, Aleve, Motrin, and Celebrex as these medications will prevent and disrupt the platelets from doing their intended job. Even icing immediately after should be avoided so tat the PRP can remain in the area as long as possible to connect to the targeted tissue that its intended to heal.

Watch the following YouTube clip of Dr. Sigman Discussing PRP
The benefit that PRP therapy offers, unlike that of other treatments it that it will have a sustained outcome and is not a temporary solution, but can cause the body to completely ad permanently heal. This is vastly different from treatments one may get at a chiropractor or a cortisone shot. It is also much more affordable than surgery. The time line for seeing results will vary with patient, the area of injury and the severity of the injury. typically, most patients begin to see signs of improvement in the form of reduced pain or increased function within a week or two and by four to six weeks after the procedure they may feel like the injury is completely healed. Continuing physical therapy and avoidance of aggressive physical activity or overloading the injected areas in the days and weeks to follow the procedure is advised, to allow the tissues to heal best.

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