What Are Platelets Exactly?
Platelets are small cells in your blood that assist with blood clotting and the natural healing process. During the platelet-rich plasma treatment, these platelets are extracted from the blood, isolated from the rest of the blood in a centrifuge, and then reinserted into the body in a more concentrated form.
Platelets in the body send signals to your brain that begin the body’s healing process. These sources of cellular signals and growth factors trigger the healing of the body right away.
How Do Platelet-Rich Plasma Injections Work?
The injected plasma promotes healing because it contains concentrated platelets withdrawn from your own blood. The entire treatment takes approximately 60 to 90 minutes since the patient’s blood must be withdrawn, spun in a centrifuge, and then the platelet-rich plasma is injected into the injured area.
Is PRP Treatment Effective?
PRP injections are highly effective, and typically patients feel results after only one injection. Patient’s will not feel immediate relief, compared to something like steroid injections, but the healing process will be jump-started. PRP also costs significantly less than surgery, and the healing time is far quicker. After one week, the injured area should be mostly healed, and normal activity can be resumed. PRP treatment is based solely on scientific research, there are several scientific studies that have shown exactly how PRP treatment improves soft tissue and bone healing.
Besides treating plantar fasciitis, general tendon strength and an increased number of cells has been recorded in Achilles tendon injuries too. Additionally, muscle regeneration in calf muscle injuries has been studied with great results. These initial studies in PRP treatment lead to its use in a number of different orthopedic injuries. Most injuries to the body’s ligaments, muscles, or tendons can be treated effectively with PRP treatment.
Are PRP Injections Painful?
PRP injections are not any more painful than having blood drawn normally, or getting a flu shot. If you’re sensitive to injections there are anesthetics which can be administered to alleviate any discomfort you experience with needles. Keep in mind that PRP injections are not instantaneous, and it typically takes a week or more to see results as the body’s natural healing process kicks in.
Recovery For Platelet-Rich Plasma Treatment Includes:
- Slight pain for a few days at the injection site
- Mobility and weight bearing may be limited to assist with the healing process
- After a week of rest, patients can return to normal activities
Side Effects of Platelet-Rich Plasma Treatment
Side effects are very uncommon with PRP injections, however, like any medical procedure, they are still possible. You likely will experience no side effects at all because the PRP is made from your own blood. Whenever needles are injected under the skin, there is a risk of irritation, infection, or inflammation, however the risk is no different than any other type of injection. After a few days, to one week of rest, some light physical therapy is usually suggested in order to facilitate the healing process and strengthen the area.
How Many Injections Do Patients Require?
Most patients require only one injection in order to feel better, but results can be increased with further injections if necessary. Generally, a patient can receive up to three PRP injections in a 6 month period. Since PRP causes healthy cells to regenerate more quickly, you’ll start to feel better within a week or two. Coupled with some physical therapy, the healing process should take hold right away. For many patients, one PRP treatment will last approximately 6 months without requiring any additional treatment.
Schedule Platelet-Rich Plasma Injections
Dr. Harounian , can administer PRP injections to treat your orthopedic ailments ranging from tendonitis, arthritis, sprains, plantar fasciitis, ankle injuries, and even any ligament, cartilage, or bone injuries you may be experiencing. These conditions can be extremely painful, so if you are living with a condition that requires PRP injections, let us relieve your suffering, and return you to a pain-free walking experience. Take a moment now to schedule your platelet-rich plasma treatment to remedy these issues now.