Most current effective treatments for pain management help by suppressing pain symptoms. However, they typically do not fix the pain problem. An example of this is epidural steroid injections, which work extremely well for pain reduction ofsciatica but do not actually solve the problem of the pinched nerve.
Platelet rich plasma, on the other hand, helps to repair and regenerate tissue that has been damaged. This includes injury to tendon, ligament and most recently it is being used to help with arthritis.
Here is how platelet rich plasma works. In an office or procedure room setting, 30 to 60 mL of blood is drawn from the patient. This is similar to a regular blood draw such as a laboratory would perform. This blood is then put into a centrifuge machine, which spins the blood very quickly for a few minutes. This separates out the whole blood into three layers.
The bottom layer contains the red blood cells, and the middle layer is called the Buffy Coat and contains predominantly white blood cells. These components are discarded. The top layer consists of platelets along with a substantial amount of growth factors. This is the platelet rich plasma that is used in the PRP injection.
The top layer consists of approximately 5 to 10 mL and inns up getting we injected into the patient’s body. Injection is being used for such areas as the elbow, shoulder, knee joint, spinal column and more.
PRP is injected into the area of injury along with some numbing medicine. No steroid is injected along with the PRP, as part of the effectiveness of platelet rich plasma comes from the fact that it does contain some inflammatory components.
PRP works through numerous mechanisms, some of which are known and others are not well understood. The platelets and the growth factors in the solution call in stem cells from the patient’s own body that help to repair the damaged tissues. Stem cells are essentially clean slate cells that are capable of differentiating into any number of cells including cartilage, skin, muscle, tendon, ligament and more.
The PRP sparks up an inflammatory reaction which is extremely effective at starting the repair process for either ligaments, tendons and there’s now some research showing it works well for arthritic conditions.
Specific conditions that are benefiting from PRP include tennis elbow, golfers elbow, Achilles tendinitis, rotator cuff tendinitis, collateral ligament injury around the knee, patellar tendinitis, and bursitis conditions all over the body.
As mentioned, platelet rich plasma therapy is now being used to help with pain relief for joint arthritis in the knee, hip, shoulder and other extremities.
Although the treatment has shown excellent results and three of the professional sports leagues approve of its use, insurance companies are not yet reimbursing for the treatment. Therefore, PRP is an out-of-pocket expense but does not cost thousands of dollars.
The Florida Pain Network connects those in pain with pain relievers, including Florida pain clinics that offer PRP. This includes such clinics as National Pain Institute, with 3 pain management Orlando locations and a Port St Lucie pain management location.
Simply go to THIS PAGE and put in your zip code to see those clinics closest to you, or call (877) 877-8556 for assistance.