Platelet Rich Plasma
Platelet-rich Plasma (PRP) is a painless and faster modern therapy to treat torn or injured tendons, ligaments, and muscles, osteoarthritis, bone healing, and athletic injuries. Dr. Bajaj and his staff at Remedy Spine & Pain Solutions in Marina Del Rey and Manhattan Beach, California, offer PRP treatment options for patients throughout Los Angeles.
What Is Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy?
Blood mainly consists of plasma (a liquid) and solid constituents like RBCs, WBCs, and platelets. Blood platelets are mostly known for their role in the clotting of blood. However, platelets also comprise numerous proteins called growth factors that are extremely essential in healing injuries.
Platelet-rich plasma therapy involves harvesting PRPs from your body and injecting them into the damaged tissues to facilitate cellular regeneration and healing. PRP essentially activates your body’s internal healing capacities to repair the damaged joints, cartilages, and bones causing pain.
How Does PRP Work?
Everyone’s blood consists of the same components — red blood cells, white blood cells, plasma, and platelets. The platelets are anti-inflammatory proteins with incredible healing capabilities because they have a high concentration of growth factors, i.e., the components that facilitate wound healing and tissue repair.
When you’re wounded, for example, the growth factors and platelets rush to the injured site to facilitate tissue regeneration. PRP works by isolating the platelets from your blood and selectively injecting them into the injured areas to repair the root cause of pain. However, since it relies on your body’s natural healing mechanisms, the results appear gradually over several weeks.
What Does PRP Treat?
- Torn or injured tendons, ligaments, and muscles
- Bone damage
- Athletic injuries
Essentially, any ligament or tendon injury excluding complete tears can be treated effectively with PRP therapy. It is just the treatment required to cut the downtime for injured athletes while also lessening the chance for re-injury.
How is PRP Prepared?
To prepare platelet-rich plasma, a small sample of blood is drawn from the patient, and platelets are separated by centrifugation. Afterward, the PRP is injected into the region of injury, kick-starting and considerably reinforcing the healing process. Since the own blood of the patient is used, there is minimal or no risk of infections and allergic reactions.
What Happens During the PRP Therapy Consultation?
Remedy Pain Solutions ensures an incredibly simple and effective PRP procedure. Our team of interventional pain specialists has over 30 collective hours of experience with regenerative treatments for chronic pain. Before recommending any treatment, we always perform a thorough analysis of your condition. We ask about your symptoms, discuss your lifestyle, review your health history, and perform a physical examination.
The physical examination allows us to narrow down the possible root causes of your pain. We look for trigger points, swellings, redness, and mobility issues to formulate a hypothesis. We confirm our hypothesis by administering advanced imaging tests, such as X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, and ultrasounds. These tests allow us to visualize the cartilages, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and bones, giving us a visual overview of the underlying problem.
We curate the treatment plan based on our diagnosis and determine if you’re a viable candidate for PRP therapy. The treatment plan may also include other interventional treatments, such as epidural injections, radiofrequency ablation, etc.
What Can I Expect from the PRP Procedure?
The PRP procedure starts with a simple blood draw. We draw a small sample of your blood using a syringe. The harvested blood is spun in a centrifuge to isolate the platelets and plasmas. Meanwhile, we apply a local anesthetic to the treatment areas to ensure a comfortable experience.
Once the PRPs are isolated, we draw them into a syringe and inject them into the strategically-chosen areas under fluoroscopic guidance. The ultrasound image allows us to visualize the areas, ensuring we deliver the PRPs to the inflamed regions without harming the surrounding tissues. The number of injections will depend on your specific goals and needs.
How Much Time is Needed for the Procedure?
The entire procedure normally takes a couple of hours; its biggest advantage being that it alleviates pain without any need for hospital stays, general anesthesia, or surgery and without an extended recovery period. Actually, most people come back to work or normal activities soon after the procedure.