PRP or platelet rich plasma injections for knee arthritis can alleviate the pain of arthritis, improve your quality of life and slow the progression of your arthritis. The research surrounding PRP is significant.
What is PRP and how does it work
After 24 weeks, nearly 84 percent of patients who received PRP injections reported a 25 percent or greater reduction in pain
In order for body to repair an injury or in the case of osteoarthritis, the loss of cartilage, is to recruit platelets to the area. As we age or due to severity of injury the body may create an insufficient amount of effort to repair. Often the pain caused by osteoarthritis is the result of something called an osteochondral lesion. These are small ‘potholes’ of missing cartilage in the knee joint. When you walk and exercise you put immense pressure on these areas, about 3x your weight. Since the bone in these areas is not covered by cartilage it begins to swell and breakdown. This bone swelling also known as reactive bone edema is one of the most common causes of knee pain.
The platelets in PRP are packed with growth and healing factors, platelets initiate repair and attract the critical assistance of stem cells. PRP therapy’s natural healing process intensifies the body’s efforts by delivering a higher concentration of platelets.
The goal of PRP therapy is to initiate a reaction in the knee that stimulates the body to heal the area. You will not regrow the cartilage you had as a teenager but you can reduce the reactive bone edema and swelling that is causing pain.
How do we create PRP?
To create PRP therapy, a small sample of your blood is drawn (similar to a lab test sample) and placed in a centrifuge that spins the blood at high speeds, separating the platelets from the other components. The concentrated platelet rich plasma (PRP) is then injected into and around the point of injury, jump-starting and significantly strengthening the body’s natural healing signal. Because your own blood is used, there is no risk of a transmissible infection and a very low risk of allergic reaction.
No hospital stay is required. The procedure is performed safely in a medical office and takes approximately 30 minutes, including preparation and recovery time. In fact, most people return to their jobs or usual activities right after the procedure.