Platelet rich plasma is an autologous (derived from patient’s own body) platelet concentrate within a plasma suspension. PRP includes platelet concentrations 4 times above peripheral blood levels. PRP contains a plethora of growth factors and other bioactive mediator molecules. Once PRP is activated it becomes a fibrin scaffold eluding growth factors, cytokines, chemokines, cell adhesion molecules, acute phase proteins, and proteins related to lipid metabolism. This biodegradable substance provides matrix-like structure and sends signals to the body for cell proliferation, differentiation and migration to the injured tissue.
Indications for platelet rich plasma therapy:
- Hamstring tears and tendonitis
- Lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow)
- Plantar fasciitis
- Achilles tendonitis
- Osteoarthritis (knee, hip, shoulder)
- Muscle injury
- Rotator cuff tears and tendonitis
- Low back pain
- Ankle sprains
- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries
- Meniscal injuries
- Wound healing
- Bone healing
Injections are usually avoided in patients with systemic infection, bleeding disorders or coagulopathy, as well as allergy to local anesthetics or any of the medications to be administered. In addition PRP therapy should be avoided in patients with history of malignancy. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and steroids should be avoided 1 week prior and at least 1 week after the procedure so as to not inhibit the effects of growth factors and the healing response.