Platelet Rich Plasma Injection
Soft tissue structures such as tendons and ligaments have poor blood supply and consequently tend to heal slowly or not at all. When an injury occurs in more vascularized tissues platelets provide initial tissue healing and start a cascade of events to lead to further healing . It is this healing cascaded that is stimulated when platelet rich plasma (PRP) is injected into damaged tissue.
What to expect during the procedure:
- One of our nursing staff will draw 15 cc of blood from which the platelet rich plasma (PRP) will be obtained.
- You may be asked to remove your pants or shirt and you will be given a gown to wear.
- The exam room is usually dark so the images can be seen clearly on the computer screen.
- The technician will move a small wand (transducer) over the area to be imaged. A warm, clear gel will be placed between the transducer and the skin to facilitate the transmission of the sound waves into and out of the body.
- Your skin will be cleaned.
- You may be given topical anesthetic which will feel very cold.
- Local anesthetic will be administered under the skin and into/around the structure or interest.
- The PRP will be administered into the area of interest using ultrasound for guidance and confirmation of correct placement.
What to expect after the procedure:
- The anesthetic lasts from 1-4 hours after procedure so you may experience temporary relief of your symptoms
- The PRP injection begins an inflammatory healing cascade which will hopefully result in healing.
- Short term (up to 1-2 weeks) you may have worse pain. You may take Tylenol or use ice but do not use anti-inflammatories (e.g. aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxyn) for pain relief.
- Healing can take 4-6 weeks so do not expect symptomatic relief prior to then.
- Your referring doctor may immobilize the area being injected.
What types of activity are allowed after the procedure:
- If your doctor has given you instructions, please follow his or her recommendations.
- In general, avoid activities that cause to pain in the area injected for 1 week following the procedure. Exercises that did not result in symptoms prior to the procedure should be acceptable.
- No blood thinners or anti-inflammatories prior to the procedure.