The History of Platelet-Rich Plasma
Platelet-Rich Plasma, AKA PRP, is comprised of a high concentration of Growth Factors and Platelets.
PRP is generated from a person’s own body.
Approximately six percent of normal blood is comprised of platelets. Conversely, PRP encompasses about 94 percent platelets. These platelets are important in the body because they are able to improve and speed up the healing processes. This is feasible due to the many proteins, immune system cells, and other bioactive factors that PRP is composed of.
The History of Platelet-Rich Plasma
The model of PRP began in the 1970s in the field of Hematology, which is the study of blood. This term was coined so that hematologists could define blood that had a higher platelet count than normal blood. This platelet-rich blood was mainly used for blood transfusions for individuals who suffered from low platelet count in their blood.
During the 1980s and 1990s, PRP began to be used during surgical procedures because it has many properties that help with wound closure, reducing inflammation, and increasing new cell growth. The most common procedure it was used for were Periodontal Surgery, Maxillofacial Surgery, Cosmetic Surgery, and Skin Grafting.
Since then, PRP began to be used in Orthopedics to help with bone grafts and fractures, connective tissue repair, cardiac surgery, sports injuries, plastic surgery, gynecology, urology, and more. Research has also shown that PRP can be effective at reducing scarring, so it is now being used to improve burn scars, post-surgery scars, and acne scarring.
How PRP Therapy Works
PRP is derived from your own blood. A vial of blood is drawn, and then it is centrifuged to separate the different components. This isolates the red blood cells, platelet-rich plasma, and platelet-poor plasma. The plasma rich in platelets is then removed from the vial to be used for PRP Therapy.
Platelets play an essential role in the body’s healing processes, especially in the preliminary stages. They help promote homeostasis by helping to form blood clots and releasing other chemicals that promote tissue repair.
Platelets play an integral role in the body’s healing processes, especially in the preliminary stages. They help promote homeostasis by helping to form blood clots and releasing other chemicals that promote tissue repair.
The benefits of these also help to reduce the need for opioid medications. Opioids are highly addictive, and developing dependence on them is quite common. Using PRP Therapy can expedite the healing process, reducing the need for repeated opioid use to manage pain.
PRP in Regenerative Medicine
A key advantage of PRP is that it is able to be delivered directly into the injury site. It is also easy to obtain, comes at a low price point, and has very few potential negative side effects. Based on these advantages, PRP can be used for many different medical treatments.
Chronic Knee and Joint Pain
Chronic Knee and Joint Pain is one of the most frequent areas of discomfort for adults. Injuries can include Osteoarthritis, Tendon Strains, Rotator Cuff Injuries, Plantar Fasciitis, Sports Hernias, Knee Cartilage Injuries, Sports Injuries, and many others.
PRP helps increase the growth of the cells responsible for creating new tissues in the damaged area, whether they build new tendons, muscles, cartilage, and connective tissue. PRP can also assist with healing the tissues more effectively, leaving them stronger, thicker, and healthier than they would be without it. This can be especially useful for cartilage injuries, like Osteoarthritis, as it can help to treat the root of the problem by stimulating new cartilage growth, which is typically extremely challenging because of the poor vascularity.
Wound infections are quite common in the sternal area after Heart Surgery, and in some cases these infections can lead to death. PRP injections have been shown to improve the healing process, reducing the risk of developing an infection.
Excess bleeding can also occasionally occur during Cardiac Surgery. Consequently, blood transfusions are necessary during surgery for some of the patients. The use of PRP in these procedures has been shown to reduce the total amount of homologous blood that patients need to be transfused. Using PRP has decreases the number of patients that needed additional transfusions as well.
Back Pain Therapies
Back Pain is one of the largest medical issues in the United States, and PRP injections are a viable solution. Disc degeneration occurs when the discs between each of the vertebrae in the spine begin to wear down, harden, and lose their ability to deal with compression. This can result in other issues, such as disc herniation or nerve pinching or damage.
PRP may be able to help hinder the disc degeneration process by closing up any tears in the tissues and healing them to prevent fluid leaking. PRP may also be able to assist with tissue regrowth for any tissue that has become damaged or worn down, resulting in diminished Back Pain and more functionality in the spine.