Chances are good that you’ve heard things in the news lately about elite athletes and celebrities that have undergone platelet-rich plasma therapy. The good news is that these treatments are revolutionizing the way that doctors treat chronic pain.
The even better news is that this life-changing therapy is available to you through Delaware Integrative Healthcare.
If you aren’t sure what platelet-rich plasma therapy is or what it can do for you, continue reading. You’ll discover that PRP therapy injections aren’t typically painful and that they can help your body heal in amazing ways. The health care professionals at Delaware Integrative Healthcare are pleased to be able to offer even more essential information during an in-person consultation.
What Is PRP Therapy?
Platelet-rich plasma, or PRP, therapy in a minimally invasive and permanent healing treatment that is effective for addressing ligament, tendon and joint damage as well as arthritis and multiple other conditions. These may include:
- Plantar fasciitis
- Muscle injuries
PRP therapy is incredibly effective because it stimulates the body’s own natural healing processes. Unlike a traditional pain-relief injection, PRP is essentially a permanent cure that may mean that a patient can avoid undergoing back surgery, joint replacement surgery or living a life that is curtailed by chronic pain.
This type of healing is possible because PRP treatments focus on the underlying cause of the problem rather than just the symptoms. Accordingly, patients who have undergone PRP therapy frequently are able to return to favorite pastimes and physical activities that they used to think were impossible.
The PRP Therapy Procedure
PRP treatments are performed in a medical office. It begins with drawing a blood sample from the patient. Several components are found within this blood. The main component is a liquid that is called plasma. Also within the blood are white cells, red cells, and platelets.
It is the platelets that contain a high concentration of growth factors, which are substances that are instrumental to the healing of injuries. After blood is drawn from the patient, their blood undergoes a centrifugation process to increase the concentration of platelets in the plasma. This enriched plasma is then injected back into the patient in a strategic location where it can stimulate critical natural healing processes.
Do PRP Injections Hurt?
In general, PRP injections are not painful. This may vary by the patient or by the area of the body in which the injection is being made. Your doctor may recommend a local anesthetic to manage this discomfort. General anesthesia typically is not used in conjunction with PRP therapy.
How Long Does A Treatment Take?
Most PRP treatments can be completed within one to two hours. This time period involves the extraction of the blood, the processing of the plasma in the centrifuge and the injections of the platelet rich plasma back into the patient.
PRP therapy is considered a minimally invasive, outpatient treatment. Accordingly, many people return to their normal daily activities immediately after their appointment. Your doctor may suggest that you take things a bit easy for 24 hours after the injections.
How Many Times Do I Need a PRP Treatment?
This largely depends on the specific condition for which you are receiving treatment. Some patients experience significant improvement with just a single treatment. However, between two and six treatments for a single condition is not uncommon.
Your PRP therapy begins with a comprehensive consultation with a medical professional. During the consultation, you’ll be asked numerous questions concerning your condition, your symptoms, your overall health and the treatment options that you have tried in the past. This helps the practitioner to decide whether or not PRP therapy is right for you. Moreover, your answers to these questions may provide some insight into how many PRP treatments may be needed in order to bring you meaningful relief.
Are There Side Effects to PRP Treatment?
Many health care practitioners recommend PRP therapy to their patients because the treatment generally is accompanied by few side effects. This is partly because this procedure is minimally invasive, and the fact that patients are being injected with their own plasma is certainly helpful as well for guarding against infection or rejection.
Typically, the only side effects that are experienced by PRP patients are some mild bruising or soreness at the sight of the injection. These side effects frequently are managed by some rest and a dose of Tylenol. It is critical that the patient avoid anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, naproxen and aspirin following this procedure.
Patients who experience an unusual amount of pain after the procedure may be prescribed a narcotic pain drug. This may be necessary because some patients experience an increase in pain resulting from their treated condition in the days following the first PRP therapy. Such an increase in pain often is associated with the site of the injection, and your doctor will recommend a prescription pain medication accordingly.
When Can I Expect to Feel Better?
This varies on a case-by-case basis. Some patients experience considerable relief within just a few days of their first treatment. For others, the improvement may be slower, but some patients report that their symptoms continue to improve for weeks or even months after the therapy.
Your doctor may recommend additional PRP therapy treatments to ensure your continued progress.
Is PRP Therapy Right For You?
PRP can be used to treat a multitude of conditions. This means that there is an excellent chance that you could benefit from this therapy.
It’s time to learn more about PRP therapy by filling out the contact form below or giving us a call. Delaware Integrative Healthcare is dedicated to helping each of its patients lead a pain-free life. Contact us today to find out whether or not PRP therapy might help you.