PRP for joints is gaining traction as a therapeutic agent that takes advantage of the natural healing properties of a patient’s own blood to repair damaged joints, ligaments, muscles, cartilage and even bone. It’s a pain management solution whose time has come. The beauty of this therapy is that PRP treatments require neither extended stays in hospitals nor a prolonged recovery stage.

PRP is short for plasma-rich platelets.  Blood is made up of red and white blood cells and platelets which travel through the bloodstream in a watery medium called plasma. Plasma contains proteins, nutrients, antibodies and other components.

How does PRP for joints work?

When a vial of a patient’s blood is centrifuged at intensely high speeds, it separates into layers. Red blood cells (which comprise about 45% of blood) are forced to the bottom of the vial. The top layer is predominately plasma, accounting for about 55% of the vial’s volume. White blood cells and platelets form a thin middle layer. This platelet-rich middle layer is key to the success of PRP therapy when it is injected into the affected joint or other affected area. On their own, platelets do not have restorative or healing properties. Their power lies in the fact they secrete growth factors and other proteins that regulate cell division, stimulate tissue regeneration, and promote healing.

Several studies have shown that injections of PRP for joints have improved function and decreased pain in elbows, wrists, shoulders, hips and knees and help relieve ankle tendonosis. It is also being studied as a treatment for osteoarthritis. Clinical studies are showing that PRP injections:

  • Inhibit inflammation and slow down the progression of osteroarthritis
  • Stimulate the formation of new cartilage
  • Increase the production of natural lubricating fluid in the joint, thus easing painful joint friction
  • Contain proteins that alter a patient’s pain receptors, thereby reducing pain sensations

Who is a good candidate for PRP?

PRP treatment works most effectively for chronic ligament and tendon sprains/strains that have failed other conservative treatment, including but not limited to:

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Rotator cuff injuries
  • Shoulder pain and instability
  • Tennis and golfer’s elbow
  • Hamstring and hip strains
  • Ankle spraings, knee sprains and instability
  • Patellofemoral syndrome and patellar tendonitis
  • Achilles tendonitis & plantar fasciitis
  • Knee, hip, and other joint osteoarthritis
  • Sacroiliac joint dysfunction and pain

Patients are no longer limited to either surgery or medication in an effort to eliminate this type of pain. PRP for joints gives you another choice to consider when dealing with joint and similar pain. In fact, it’s a good place to start. Side effects of PRP injections are minimal as the patient should have no reaction to his or her own blood.

Other amazing uses of PRP therapies

PRP for joints is just one area where we’re seeing exceptional results in our patient. PRP microneeding is an awesome tool for cosmetic rejuvenation. Because the platelets contain vital growth hormones, PRP injections in the scalp are naturally a good fit for stimulating lost hair follicles and hair restoration.