Platelet-rich plasma injections or PRP injections utilize the patient's own blood platelets to promote healing of wounds and soft tissue disorders as an alternative option to surgery. PRP injections have been successfully used to help heal tendons, ligaments, muscles and joints.
Platelets are derived from the cells in our bone marrow and are a component of the blood, along with red blood cells and plasma. In order to undergo PRP injections, the patient's blood is drawn into a tube which is then "spun" or centrifuged to create the platelet-rich plasma. The platelet-rich plasma is then injected into the injured area under local anaesthesia. Ultrasound imaging may be used to guide the injection. The concentrated blood components are rich in cytokines and growth factors which are released into the injured area gradually repairing the injury by increasing collagen development. As the collagen develops it tightens and strengthens tendons and ligaments in the injured area ultimately healing the injury.
PRP injections are showing good results with improved function and decreased pain in clinical studies.