Platelet Rich Plasma therapy, or PRP, has been featured on the news frequently in recent years. Usually, it’s mentioned in connection with treatments being provided to elite athletes such as Hines Ward, Troy Polamalu, Kobe Bryant, and Tiger Woods.
However, this revolutionary therapy also is available for weekend warriors and competitive athletes in training. Treatments further are being offered for regrowing hair and for helping the skin to regain its youthful glow.
The therapy typically involves collecting a sample of the patient’s blood, treating it in a centrifuge machine to boost the platelet content and then re-injecting the plasma into an injury or another treatment site.
Within a few days or weeks, the patient begins to experience fewer symptoms of the injury. Thanks to the platelet-rich plasma that has been injected, their body is actually working to heal itself.
Depending upon the extent of the injury, it may be necessary to undergo more than one injection. In general, these are performed within a few weeks of each other. Your physician will tell you whether or not a single injection or multiple injections may be required to meet your objectives.
Once people understand what PRP therapy is, their next question is: “How much does a PRP treatment cost?” While prices may vary depending upon your specific treatment plan, what follows is a broad overview that will help you make a decision.
Does Insurance Cover the Cost for PRP Therapy?
Although elite athletes have had access to PRP therapy for at least the last few decades, these treatments have not been available to the public until far more recently. This means that PRP therapy is still considered an experimental treatment by most insurance companies. Consequently, these procedures rarely are covered by insurance.
As scientific studies into the efficacy of the treatment continue, this is likely to change. Until then, it is still worthwhile to consider paying for PRP treatments out of pocket based on the results that other patients already have obtained.
PRP Therapy Cost: Tendon or Muscle Injury
PRP treatments frequently are used to treat tendon and muscle injuries. This includes various forms of tendinitis like tennis elbow, Achilles tendonitis and patellar tendinopathy in the knees. Anyone who has one of these conditions knows that excruciating pain accompanies them. When rest and traditional therapies fail to alleviate the symptoms, then it is time to try something new and revolutionary.
Muscle strains, pulled muscles or torn muscles also have been treated with PRP injections. People who have struggled with recovering from an acute injury may be able to get back to their favorite activities thanks to these treatments.
In general, tendon and muscle injuries require between one and two injections, typically at a cost of about $300 each.
PRP Therapy Cost: Joint Injury or Arthritis
While practitioners and patients wholeheartedly believe in the efficacy of PRP injections, this treatment cannot replace cartilage or repair joint damage. Nonetheless, inflamed joints may become significantly less swollen and painful with PRP treatments.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that approximately 23 percent of people in the U.S. suffer from arthritis. These individuals are limited in their activities and movements, and their enjoyment of life is severely restricted. Early evidence suggests that PRP therapy can bring much-needed relief.
Most joint injuries and arthritis patients require between two and three injections at $300 each. These injections generally are conducted at one- or two-week intervals.
PRP Therapy Cost: Facial
PRP therapy isn’t just for athletes and those who are suffering from the pain of an injury or arthritis. It’s also making a name for itself in the world of beauty.
An increasing number of med spas and clinics are offering a PRP facial. The treatment involves collecting blood from the client’s arm, processing the blood through a centrifuge machine and then using a micro-needling process to inject the plasma into the facial skin.
Effectively, the doctor runs a micro-needling pen across the patient’s face while also applying the platelets into the tiny holes made by the pen. The skin is numbed before the process begins, which means that it is a virtually pain-free experience. However, two or three days of recovery are required. Within two weeks, most patients find that their skin is glowing, firmer than it was before the treatment and that their pores are smaller.
PRP facials typically cost about $1,500.
PRP Therapy Cost: Hair
Men and women who are suffering the effects of hair loss may benefit from undergoing PRP therapy. This non-surgical option shows tremendous promise for stimulating hair growth.
Early evidence indicates that PRP injections may be helpful for re-growing hair when it is thinning. The procedure for treating hair loss is much like the procedures for the other uses of PRP treatments. Blood is collected from the patient’s arm and then processed in a centrifuge machine.
An anesthesia block is provided so that the nerves in the scalp will not respond to pain stimulus. Then, the platelet-rich plasma is injected directly into the scalp where hair loss is occurring. Because no general sedation is used, the patient is free to return to their normal activities immediately after the procedure.
Hair-loss patients typically have this treatment performed every three to four months until they feel that their hair growth has been sufficiently stimulated.
The cost typically ranges between $900 and $2,500 depending upon the number of treatments that the patient elects to undergo.
Is PRP Worth the Cost?
While doctors can never guarantee the outcome of any medical procedure, the evidence suggests that PRP is a promising therapy for a number of tissue injuries as well as hair loss. It may even provide an extremely rejuvenating facial.
Many people who have received PRP injections are surprised by how easy the procedure is and how much their condition improves. Reports of patients being able to resume daily activities and sports that they gave up because of an injury are being made every day.
The best way for you to decide whether or not PRP therapy is right for your condition is to speak with a PRP doctor. Schedule a consultation today to learn about how PRP injections can change your life.