What Can Platelet Plasma Do for Aches and Pains?
By: Edward G. Loniewski, DO, FACOS, FAOAO
Platelet rich plasma is not just platelets - it is a combination of growth factors and important proteins which not only prep the area for repair, but also deliver important growth factors into areas where they cannot reach.
This healing cascade can be used for:
- Arthritis of the knee, hip, ankle and wrist
- Tennis Elbow
- Golfer’s Elbow
- Tendonitis of hip, knee and shoulder
- Bursitis of the hip, knee and shoulder
- Ligament injuries
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Platelet Rich Plasma for Arthritis
The growth factors and proteins found in platelet rich plasma may help with the pain and loss of function commonly associated with arthritis.
Earlier studies performed in Italy on the use of platelet rich plasma for arthritis of the knee revealed some promising results for arthritis of the knee. Dr. Elise Kon from the Rizolli Orthopedic Clinic in Bologna, Italy followed over 100 patients for over one year, and found that all parameters of knee function and pain improved but these injections would lose their effect over time.
Researchers from many other respected institutions such as Rush University, Cornell, and the Hospital for Special Surgery also found some benefits of using platelet rich plasma in basic science studies as well as animal studies and suggested that the positive findings were not just due to the platelets, but the other bioactive components. Some further studies were developed to compare PRP to common treatments and determine which treatment was superior; one study compared an injection of a steroid to platelet rich plasma and found that the PRP patients had superior reduction in pain and improvement in function for longer periods of time.
Italian researchers compared PRP to the very commonly administered hyaluronic acid injections sometimes known as rooster comb or chicken fat injections with the trade names Supartz™ or Synvisc™. Over 120 patients were given either the hyaluronic injection or PRP, and followed for six months. The PRP patients had superior outcome scores, and PRP even worked very well in severe forms of arthritis. This finding was repeated over and over in other studies; a review of these studies lead researchers to conclude that “PRP is a viable treatment for knee OA, and has the potential to lead to symptomatic relief for up to 12 months.”
This finding was confirmed with another meta-analysis of over 551 studies, concluding, “This study suggests that PRP injection is more efficacious than HA injection and placebo in reducing symptoms and improving function and quality of life. It has the potential to be the treatment of choice in patients with mild-to-moderate OA of the knee who have not responded to conventional treatment.”
Not only does PRP reduce the pain of arthritic joints, but one study demonstrated that PRP increased the muscle strength of the treated knee, as compared to a placebo treatment in the other knee. Researchers found that the PRP treated knee had significantly more strength than the knee which received an injection of normal saline.
Given all of this evidence, keep the following in mind: no matter what other people tell you, PRP has significant evidence of being proven useful in the treatment of osteoarthritis when compared to commonly accepted treatments! Even when we compare the results to alternative methods of treating arthritis such as prolotherapy, PRP appeared to have a longer lasting positive effect.
If you would prefer to have a face to face consultation with Dr. Loniewski, please feel free to contact us at 810-299-8552 for an appointment today or you can register on-line at : https://www.cellularhealing.net/next-steps/book-an-appointment