Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy is a non-invasive form of regenerative medicine that uses the body’s own blood cells to heal a degenerative condition or injury. Because PRP therapy utilizes only your own platelets, it is extremely safe and considered an effective alternative to surgery for some patients.
Platelets in red blood cells are involved in the clotting process when there is a wound. They also contain growth factors that initiate the healing process. While platelets and stem cells work together in some ways that are not fully understood, it is thought that PRP injected into the site of injury or damage may rally the stem cells in the area to begin the regenerative healing process. This promotes what is considered a healing cascade, and can help relieve pain and reduce inflammation.
Ultrasound and MRIs have shown that PRP injections are an effective therapy in healing sports injuries, pain relief for osteoarthritis, tendon injuries, back and neck pain, and other orthopedic conditions. Treating pain and injuries in the early stages of healing can help avoid further degeneration and damage to joints or tendons. This can prevent pain, and may help to avoid surgery down the road.
In a PRP therapy session, a small amount of blood is drawn from the patient’s arm (the same amount drawn when you are getting lab work done). A centrifuge spins your blood to isolate the platelets and concentrate them in amounts 5 – 10 times greater than in your blood. This plasma is then injected directly into the area that needs healing. Pain relief and complete healing may be possible after just one or two sessions, but several injections may be necessary over the course of a few months.
PRP therapy is safe, non-invasive, and effective in healing many musculoskeletal injuries and conditions. Because there are few, if any side effects, PRP therapy offers an alternative to oral medications that may cause dependency in some patients. The pain management specialists at Balcones Pain Consultants in Austin, Texas offer PRP therapy for pain relief and healing. Call (512) 834-4141 or request an appointment online to learn about your options for pain relief. We have locations in Austin, Cedar Park, and Marble Falls, Texas.