PRP – Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy is an injection procedure that, like Prolotherapy, encourages the body’s own natural healing cascade to repair damaged tissue. However, unlike Prolotherapy, foreign substances are not used in PRP therapy, instead this type of treatment utilizes the patient’s own blood.
Platelet-initiated Blood clotting, Inflammation, Cell Proliferation, and Tissue Remodeling are the four series of events that make up the body’s natural healing cascade – called The Stages of Healing. This process in all tissues in the human body is initiated and controlled by bioactive proteins found in platelets, plasma, and white blood cells. PRP is a method of concentrating these proteins and administering them to the site of tissue damage where they then act as a catalyst to stimulate the healing process. Once one has a basic understanding of this process, it is easy to see how taking OTC(over-the-counter) and/or prescription “anti-inflammatory” medications (such as Ibuprofen/Motrin/Advil, etc and/or Mobic/Celebrex – “NSAIDs”) can actually work AGAINST healing!
Platelet-rich plasma is retrieved using a concentration method. A small amount of a patient’s blood is placed into a filtration system, or centrifuge, that rotates at high speed. This separates red blood cells from the platelets that release proteins, among other particles, that are involved in the body’s natural healing process. A teaspoon or two of the substance that remains is injected into the area of damage. This high concentration of platelets often encourages growth of new soft-tissue or bone cells. Injecting this substance where blood would otherwise rarely go delivers the healing capabilities of platelets without triggering the characteristic clotting response for which they are commonly known.
One can easily see why this promising procedure is well on its way to not only becoming a recommended treatment option, but required versus more invasive means such as surgery.