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Archive for February 26th, 2013

OA and Plasma Therapy

February 26, 2013

Platelets used in plasma therapy speed up healing, and my be helpful in treating osteoarthritis.

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy has been used by high-profile athletes for high-profile treatments.  PRP therapy works by taking a blood sample, isolating the platelets in the blood, and then injecting them back into the patient.  Platelets are an important part of the natural healing process, producing growth factors and forming blood clots to help close open wounds.  PRP therapy can reduce knee pain and improve function for patients with athletic or osteoarthritic injuries.

Recent research at New York’s Hospital for Special Surgery supports the use of PRP therapy for patients with osteoarthritis.  In a study published in the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine, Dr. Brian Halpern evaluated the effectiveness of PRP therapy by objectively measuring the quality of patient’s cartilage with PRP treatment.  They found that after a single injection, there was no further damage to cartilage for the subsequent year.  Over that same time period, patients reported that their pain dropped to half of pre-treatment levels.

PRP therapy is a relatively new treatment, and may not be appropriate for everyone, but it might be right for you.  If you suffer from knee osteoarthritis, and struggle with knee pain, ask your doctor about PRP treatment.  A single treatment might make the next year a whole lot easier.