PRP Injections Questions and Answers
PRP, or platelet-rich plasma, are concentrated samples of blood rich in healing properties. They are typically administered via an injection and can treat a multitude of conditions, from alopecia (baldness) to inflammation. PRP injections have been commonly used in sports since the 1980s and have recently gained popularity in other parts of the medical sector.
How many injections do you need for PRP?
Just as each patient is different, the number of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections needed to reduce inflammation or pain may vary. For best results, treatment of platelet-rich plasma therapy should include three injections spanning over the course of three months. Patients have exhibited relief from PRP injections that lasts between one and three years.
PRP is a proven treatment method that is designed to promote tissue growth, reduce inflammation, and dissolve scar tissue. How many PRP injections are needed for arthritis, tendonitis or knee pain will vary from one case to the next. If you are struggling with poor mobility, chronic pain, or other issues with your joints, PRP may be a viable treatment option.
Does PRP really work?
People might consider PRP therapy for several reasons:
- Other treatments may fail to provide sufficient relief.
- As PRP is derived from the patient’s own blood, the injections carry few risks.
- Other treatments have side effects or drawbacks:
- Physical therapy does not always satisfactorily relieve symptoms or improve function.
- While cortisone injections can temporarily reduce pain, symptoms can reoccur. Also, tendons exposed to cortisone may weaken, exacerbating the injury.
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) may effectively reduce pain, but repeated use can cause or exacerbate stomach problems, blood pressure, and heart problems.
- Such as arthroscopic debridement, minor surgeries to treat tendon damage and degradation do not always work, tend to carry more risks, and have longer recovery times.
- Although more clinical studies are needed, the research so far seems to be auspicious.
Because PRP injections carry few risks and because there is no surefire way to treat damaged tendons, some doctors believe PRP therapy is worth trying.
It is important to keep in mind that PRP is not a cure-all, and it may be best used in combination with nonsurgical treatments and lifestyle changes, such as weight loss, physical therapy, taping, and NSAIDs.
How long should you rest after PRP injection?
For 2-3 days after your injection, rest your body and avoid all activity other than health maintenance activities such as bathing, dressing, cooking, etc. Avoid much walking if injected in hip, knee, ankle or foot. Use crutches if you can’t walk without discomfort.
For 1-2 weeks after your injection, avoid any strenuous activities. For upper extremity procedures such as injections into shoulder, elbow or wrist, do not do any repetitive motion, lifting, pulling, pushing, or grasping with the arm. For lower extremity procedures such as injections into the hip, thigh, knee, ankle, or foot, avoid prolonged walks, hikes, or running.
After 2 weeks, return to normal activity but avoid things that cause increased pain in the injected areas.
If you or someone you know is experiencing pain caused by inflammation of the tendon or joints, have tried traditional medicine without success or want to avoid surgery, then PRP injections might be right for you! At American Pain and Wellness, we have trained professionals to help you feel your best. Contact our office to talk with an expert today. To schedule an appointment at our clinic, visit us online or give us a call!