Platelet Rich Plasma

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Welcome to the PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) treatment program for tendon and joint conditions. This information sheet will provide you with valuable details about PRP therapy and what you can expect during your treatment.

What is PRP:
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is a medical treatment that uses a patient’s own blood to promote healing and tissue regeneration. It is primarily used in various fields, including orthopaedics, dermatology, and sports medicine.

Platelets are blood cells that play a crucial role in clotting and wound healing. They contain various growth factors and proteins that are essential for tissue repair and regeneration. By injecting PRP into an injured or damaged area, it is believed that the concentrated platelets can stimulate the body’s natural healing processes, enhance tissue regeneration, and promote overall healing.

How is PRP prepared for injection:
PRP preparation follows the steps below:

  1. Blood Collection: A small amount of your blood is drawn, typically from your arm, using a syringe or a specialized PRP collection system. The amount of blood collected depends on the specific treatment and the desired concentration of platelets.
  2. Centrifugation: The collected blood is then processed in a centrifuge machine. The centrifuge spins the blood at high speeds, separating its components based on their density. The goal is to separate the platelets and plasma from other blood components like red blood cells and white blood cells.
  3. Plasma Separation: After centrifugation, the blood separates into three layers: red blood cells at the bottom, a thin layer of white blood cells and platelets in the middle, and plasma (yellowish fluid) at the top. The middle layer, which contains the concentrated platelets, is carefully extracted.

Is there Evidence the PRP works?

The effectiveness of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatments is a subject of ongoing research and debate in the medical community. While there is some evidence suggesting potential benefits, it’s important to note that the quality and consistency of the studies vary, and definitive conclusions are still being drawn.

In certain applications, such as the treatment of certain types of tendon injuries and osteoarthritis, some studies have reported positive outcomes with PRP. For example, PRP injections have shown potential for improving pain and function in conditions like lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow), Achilles tendinopathy, and knee osteoarthritis. However, it’s worth noting that other studies have found mixed or inconclusive results.

It’s important to approach PRP treatments with realistic expectations and consult with a qualified healthcare professional who can evaluate your specific condition and provide guidance based on the latest evidence. They will be able to assess whether PRP is a suitable treatment option for you and discuss potential benefits, risks, and alternatives based on your individual circumstances.

What are the indications of PRP:

 Common conditions that PRP injections has shown promising results include:

  1.  Tendinopathies: PRP is commonly used in the treatment of tendon injuries and chronic tendinopathies, such as:

    -Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis)

     -Golfer’s elbow (medial epicondylitis)

    -Achilles tendinopathy

     -Patellar tendinopathy (jumper’s knee)

    -Rotator cuff tendinopathy

  2. Osteoarthritis: PRP has been investigated as a potential treatment for osteoarthritis, primarily in joints such as the knee, hip, and shoulder. It aims to reduce pain and improve joint function.
  3. Muscle Injuries: PRP may be used in the treatment of muscle strains and tears, particularly in elite athletes or cases where accelerated healing is desired.
  4. Plantar Fasciitis: PRP injections have been explored as a treatment option for plantar fasciitis, a condition characterized by heel pain.

What are the contraindications of PRP:

PRP is safe for most individuals and there are few contraindications, however, patients with the following.

conditions may not be suitable candidates for the procedure.

-Platelet disorders and blood disorders

-Cancer, Chemotherapy or Radiotherapy

-Acute and Chronic Infections

-Anti-coagulation therapy. (Warfarin is not a PRP contraindication, but may be for the procedure)

-Pregnancy or breastfeeding, simply because non-medically urgent procedures can be delayed until

post pregnancy or breastfeeding.

– Skin Diseases or Lesions at the Treatment Site:

– Allergies and Sensitivities:

How Do I organise PRP injection:

a- Initial Evaluation:

Before undergoing PRP therapy, you will have an initial evaluation with a health professional who specializes in musculoskeletal medicine. This evaluation may include a physical examination, medical history review, and diagnostic tests (such as imaging) to determine if PRP therapy is appropriate for your condition.

If you are suitable for PRP, you will be booked for a PRP injection on another day.

b- Day of procedure:
After the PRP solution is prepared, it will be carefully injected into the targeted area using ultrasound guidance for precision. Local anaesthesia may be administered to minimize any discomfort during the procedure.  

What should I expect after PRP injection:

After receiving a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection, here are some general expectations for what you might experience:

  1. Discomfort or Soreness: It is common to experience some discomfort or soreness at the injection site. This can range from mild to moderate and may last for a few days. You can manage this with over-the-counter pain relievers as recommended by your healthcare provider.
  2. Swelling: Swelling at the injection site is also common. It can occur immediately after the injection and may persist for a few days. Applying ice packs or cold compresses intermittently during the first 24-48 hours can help reduce swelling.
  3. Activity Restrictions: Your healthcare provider may provide specific instructions regarding activity restrictions following the PRP injection. Depending on the area treated and the underlying condition, you may be advised to avoid strenuous activities, heavy lifting, or intense exercise for a certain period of time. It’s important to follow these instructions to optimize the healing process.
  4. Gradual Improvement: The effects of PRP treatment typically develop gradually over time. It may take several weeks or even months to experience the full benefits of the therapy. The rate of improvement can vary depending on the specific condition being treated and individual factors.

What are the side effects of PRP
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy is generally considered safe, but like any medical procedure, it does carry the potential for side effects. While side effects are typically mild and temporary, it’s important to be aware of them. Here are some potential side effects associated with PRP:

  1. Pain or Discomfort: It is common to experience some pain or discomfort at the injection site following PRP treatment. This can be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers and typically resolves within a few days.
  2.  Swelling: Swelling at the injection site is another common side effect of PRP therapy. It is usually temporary and resolves on its own within a few days.
  3. Bruising: Bruising can occur at the injection site due to the needle puncture. It is typically mild and fades over time.
  4. Infection: While rare, there is a potential risk of infection at the injection site. It is essential to maintain proper hygiene and follow any post-treatment care instructions provided by your healthcare provider to minimize this risk.
  5.  Allergic Reactions: Although uncommon, allergic reactions to components of the PRP preparation, such as anticoagulants or activating agents, are possible. If you have a known allergy or sensitivity, it’s important to inform your healthcare provider beforehand.
  6. Tissue Damage: In rare cases, PRP injections may cause damage to surrounding tissues, nerves, or blood vessels. This risk can be minimized by ensuring the procedure is performed by a qualified healthcare professional.

It’s important to note that the occurrence of side effects can vary from person to person, and not everyone experiences them. By choosing an experienced healthcare professional and following their instructions, you can minimize the risks associated with PRP therapy.

If you experience any severe or persistent side effects after PRP treatment, it’s recommended to contact your healthcare provider for further evaluation and guidance.

Will I need any follow up or rehabilitation after my injection:

Following your PRP therapy, the medical team may recommend a customized rehabilitation program that includes exercises, physical therapy, and lifestyle modifications to optimize your recovery and long-term outcomes. It is essential to follow these recommendations and attend any scheduled follow-up appointments to monitor your progress.

How much does PRP Injection cost:

Unfortunately, PRP therapy is not covered by Medicare or private insurance. The cost of the injection will be discussed with you by our administrative staff if the health professionals consider PRP therapy as a suitable option for your problem.

The cost of PRP therapy includes the injection and consumable fee as well as the cost of the PRP and ultrasound machines.

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