Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) in Sports Medicine
Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) is highly effective and easy to perform with no side effects or risk factors, making it a popular chose of treatment within sports medicine and injuries. When compared to surgery or stem cells, PRP is relatively inexpensive, quick, and fairly simple. This is why platelet-rich plasma (prp) in orthopedic sports medicine has become such a dominant treatment method.
What is PRP?
Firstly, blood is drawn from the patient. This sample is placed in a centrifuge where the components are separated. Once the centrifuge is complete, the platelets are further concentrated. These will then be administered via injection into the site of the injury.
Why PRP in sports medicine? Athletes are the earliest uses of this popular form of treatment. Their livelihoods are at risk if they miss their sports. Due to this, athletes are driven to find less invasive methods of injury managment and a faster recovery time. This is why they’ve turned to PRP and continue to do so time and time again. Compared to corrective surgery, PRP is minimally invasive and simple to produce. Our team is able to create PRP from small amounts of blood in a short period of time (less than an hour in total). No need to send the material out for processing or culturing, platelet-rich plasma is an outpatient procedure.
PRP for sports injuries
PRP is specifically used for spending up repair and recover. The list of sports related injuries PRP can treat continues to grow each year as we find more ways to utilise this treatment. Three common injuries and how PRP can help:
Rotator Cuff Tears (shoulder tendons): Regenerative medicine for rotator cuff injuries is a common alternative to invasive surgery. Many sports place your rotator cuff at risk for injury, so nonsurgical treatments are becoming more used.
Rotator cuff tears are one of the most common sources of shoulder pain and disability. The number of rotator cuff tears continues to climb as the aging population increases sports activity. However, this injury is also common in young athletes who use the flexion tendon repeatedly (a pitcher, for example).
While the most common treatment is arthroscopic rotator cuff repair (RCR), studies show that this treatment is unreliable.
Knee Osteoarthritis: Although the disease is normally associated with age related degeneration, trauma to the cartilage or joint may result in osteoarthritis in younger patients. This is particularly common amongst athletes in contact sports. Thankfully, platelet-rich plasma is a fairly common treatment for knee osteoarthritis. All five stages of osteoarthritis are treatable, however, PRP is most effective during the earlier stages of osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the most common musculoskeletal disorder, with an estimated prevalence of 27 million Americans. The knee is commonly symptomatic, resulting in pain and disability. With proper use of PRP, patient’s can stave off the need for any form of surgery. Reports show significant improvement in PRP patients during 2 to 12 months post injection. While each patient and degenerative change is unique, most individuals only need between 1 to 3 injections. A small amount of physical therapy may be prescribed for those with more severe stages of OA. Since it is a degenerative disease, the aim of PRP therapy is to relieve pain and discomfort while strengthening muscles and maintaining range of motion. As long as you are not adding too much stress to the diseased joint, keeping them active will help keep them healthy.
Osteoarthritis is the most common musculoskeletal disorders affecting millions of people. The knee is commonly symptomatic, resulting in pain and disability. With proper use of PRP, patient’s can stave off the need for any form of surgery. Reports show significant improvement in PRP patients during 2 to 12 months post injection. While each patient and degenerative change different, most individuals only need between 1 to 3 injections. A small amount of physical therapy may be prescribed for those with more severe stages of OA. Since it is a degenerative disease, the aim of PRP therapy is to relieve pain and discomfort while strengthening muscles and maintaining mobility. As long as you are not adding too much stress to the diseased joint, keeping them active will help keep them healthy.
Overuse injuries (tendinitis etc...)
Overuse injuries are typically caused by repetitive actions, forearm, hand, shoulder... The most common examples of sports with overuse injuries is swimming, golf, and tennis. Repeated throwing motions well over 50 times a game are at risk of overuse. The constant repetition wears down the elbow.
Swimming is a low-impact fitness activity and sport. It is part of the reason for its popularity. However, most people aren’t aware of the stress swimming places on the shoulders. “Swimming shoulder” occurs when the joint undergoes the constant arching motion. Even minor tears can lead to rotator cuff injuries and shoulder instability. “Tennis elbow” is a common term for a condition caused by overuse of arm, forearm, and hand muscles that results in elbow pain. The term came into use because it is commonly associated with tennis players, but you also get this condition with many other factors too. Tennis elbow is caused by injury of the muscle and tendon area outside of the elbow. Specifically, it involves the area where the muscles and tendons of the forearm attach to the outside of the elbow. “Golfer’s elbow” is the same process occurring on the inside of the elbow. Overuse injuries, as a whole, mostly affects people in their dominant arm. Nevertheless, it can also occur in the nondominant arm. People who participate in leisure or work activities that require repetitive arm, elbow, wrist, and hand movements are also subject to overuse injuries. POTENTIAL OVERUSE SYMPTOMS: Again repetitive tasks such as brushing your teeth comes with a sharp pain in the injured area.
Pain slowly increases around the outside of the injured joint
Pain is worse when stabilising or moving the injured joint – lifting, using tools, opening items, etc.
PRP Injection for Other Injuries: For the purposes of this article, we have attempted to go in depth on a several key sports related injuries. If you are interested in learning more about PRP for the below list of injuries please feel free to get in touch with us as firstname.lastname@example.org Knee: Soft tissue damage in the knee Early knee OA General knee pain Patellar tendinitis
Foot: Plantar fasciitis
Shoulder: Frozen shoulder
Elbow: Elbow tendinopathy General elbow pain Tennis elbow
General: Muscle tissue Tissue regeneration Post-traumatic arthritis Rheumatoid arthritis
Here at Dynamic Regenerative Medicine and Dynamic Osteopaths we specialise in reducing and eliminating pain for our patients to help restore their ability to work and live as they desire. We strive to provide each patient with state of the art care in a compassionate and professional environment. Our conveniently located clinics can be found in Henley In Arden, Harborne Birmingham and Barnt Green.
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