Platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP, is an increasingly popular treatment to heal injuries.
Many people have received this treatment during rehabilitation for athletic injuries, and as its use increases, so too does its record of success. Among those who have benefitted from platelet-rich plasma therapy are a number of celebrity athletes who have been able to return to their sports faster following injuries than traditional treatment options would have allowed.
What Is PRP?
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, PRP is an advanced form of treatment that uses the patient’s own blood that has been enriched with extra platelets. One of the normal components of blood, platelets contain growth factors, a class of proteins that is key to the healing of injuries.
To enrich the blood with extra platelets, a small sample is drawn from the patient, similar to what would be taken for a blood test. The sample is placed in a centrifuge, a machine that separates the blood into its various components: plasma (the liquid part), red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. By removing some of the other components, the concentration of platelets is increased in the sample by a factor of between five and 10. The platelet-rich blood is then injected into the site of the patient’s injury, where the extra platelets speed the regeneration of damaged tissues and aid in the healing process.
PRP has been used to treat a variety of athletic injuries and other medical conditions, including:
- Acute ligament injuries
- Muscle tears
- Injuries to tendons
- Broken bones
- Hairline bone fractures
- Arthritic conditions of the knee
PRP is also used to speed the regeneration of tissues that were damaged during surgical procedures.
PRP in Professional Sports
Professional athletes have a strong incentive to heal completely and get back in the game as fast as possible. They do not want to just hide the pain and mask the symptoms, because this could compound the injury and create a permanent disability. Pro athletes – and their trainers, coaches, and physicians – are turning to PRP because of its ability to promote healing and significantly reduce recovery time.
Some athletes who have received PRP therapy include:
- Basketball MVP Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors, for treatment of a knee injury
- Baseball MVP Alex Rodriguez of the Yankees, for a knee injury
- Golf legend Tiger Woods, to treat an Achilles tendon injury
- Tennis great Rafael Nadal, also for knee injury
These well-paid professional athletes can afford the best medical care available, and they have highly-paid trainers and physicians to give them advice on the most advanced treatments. Their reliance upon PRP therapy – and the huge dollar amounts that depend upon these celebrities’ successful healing – is a good endorsement for its effectiveness.
But PRP is not only for the wealthy and famous. This reasonably-priced therapy is available in San Mateo, Lafayette, Santa Cruz, and Monterey, CA, from Evolved Medical. Call (888) 925-4568 or schedule a free consultation online to see if PRP is the right therapy to treat your athletic injury or other orthopedic condition.