Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP)
At Longevità Medical, board-certified orthopedic physician Dr. Maria Karipidis Pouria uses injections of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) to treat a range of sports injuries including torn meniscus, ACL injuries, cartilage damage, bursitis, strains, and tears to help accelerate the healing of injured joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments. This cutting-edge procedure offered at our regenerative medical practice in Victor, NY near Rochester uses your own body’s blood to promote a rapid healing response, reduce swelling and pain, and help you return to your active lifestyle more quickly than traditional medical treatments.
How Does PRP Work?
Platelet-rich plasma is a higher concentration of platelets (in a portion of blood called the “plasma”) than the amount normally found in the blood. Platelets are what naturally begin the healing process in the body anytime an injury occurs. The platelets release proteins and growth factors that promote healing to the injured area. The concentration of platelets in PRP allows the body to recognize the injury as a priority and heals it more quickly and more thoroughly than your body can by itself.
What Are the Benefits of PRP Injections?
PRP pain treatment injections are a much simpler procedure than surgery. PRP is a non-operative regenerative treatment designed to use your body’s cells to promote healing. Performed safely in the office, PRP therapy relieves pain without the risks of surgery, general anesthesia, or hospital stays and without a prolonged recovery.
To complete PRP therapy, a sample of blood is drawn (similar to a lab test sample) and the blood is then spun at high speeds, separating the platelets from the other components in a centrifuge. The concentrated platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is then injected into and around the point of injury. No stitches are necessary.
The goal is to:
- Reduce pain
- Improve joint function
- Possibly slow, halt, or even repair damage to cartilage
- Help decrease inflammation
- Improve or accelerate healing
- Allow for a quicker recovery
- Trigger production of tissues like collagen, muscles, and connective tissues
- Recruit regenerative cells to the area
- Increase the regenerative cells’ effectiveness
What Conditions Can Be Treated With PRP?
PRP is helpful for treating joint, muscle, tendon, and ligament injuries, including tendonitis & bursitis, sports injuries to the knees, hips, shoulders, and other joints, and osteoarthritis pain.
The following conditions can be treated with PRP therapy:
- Tendon injuries (Patellar Tendonitis, Quad Tendonitis)
- Muscle injuries
- Ligament sprains or tears (MCL, LCL, ACL)
- Muscle pain or injury
- Greater Trochanteric Bursitis
- Gluteal tendonitis or tendinopathy
- Tendon injuries
- Hamstring tendonitis, partial tears or tendinopathy
Shoulder and Arm Pain
- Rotator Cuff tendonitis, tendinopathy or partial tears
- Bicipital tendonitis
- Medial and lateral epicondylitis (golfers & tennis elbow)
What Can I Expect at My PRP Treatment?
Following a formal evaluation and diagnostic workup, an individualized treatment plan will be discussed with Dr. Karipidis. At your treatment appointment, blood is drawn from the arm and placed in a special FDA-approved processing unit, which separates platelets, white blood cells and serum from red blood cells. The platelets and white blood cells (including stem cells) are then concentrated and collected into a sterile syringe.
The skin and soft tissue is injected with a local anesthetic, followed by the PRP into the treatment area. Depending on the size of the injured tissue, one or several needles are inserted to optimize placement of the product, and it is done under ultrasound guidance for accuracy and precision.
The procedure takes approximately one hour, including preparation and recovery time.
What Is the Recovery and Downtime Associated with PRP Injections?
Often following the initial injection, an “achy” soreness is felt at the site of injury. This “soreness” is a positive sign that a healing response has been set in motion. This effect can last for several days and gradually decreases as healing and tissue repair occurs. Plan to have someone drive you home after the procedure.
The main adverse side effect is post-treatment discomfort. Some patients experience a low-grade fever, swelling of the injected area, body aches, and fatigue for the first 72 hours (inflammatory phase).
It is important that anti-inflammatory medications, such as Ibuprofen, Naproxen and Aspirin, and steroids be avoided for two weeks before and following PRP treatments. These medicines may block the effects of the intended healing response facilitated by the injection itself. Most patients will experience 1-3 days of discomfort that is easily managed with Tylenol or a prescription pain medication that Dr. Karipidis may prescribe at the time of the procedure.
Rest and only regular daily activities (e.g. washing, walking, light household chores, etc.) are advised for the first 2 weeks post-treatment, after which you can start to incorporate regular workout routines or physical therapy.
Generally, patients are able to return to work after a couple of days post-treatment. This may be dependent on the profession and the area(s) that are being treated. It is best to ask Dr. Karipidis for a more reliable estimate at your appointment.
Are PRP Injections Safe?
Research and clinical data show that PRP injections are extremely safe, with minimal risk for any adverse reaction or complication. Because the injectable products are produced from the patient’s own blood, there is no concern for rejection or disease transmission. There is a small risk of infection from any injection into the body, but this is rare. Recent research suggests that PRP may have an anti-bacterial property which protects against possible infection.
When Can I Expect to Feel Results?
Results vary from patient to patient. Generally, patients report feeling less pain or seeing improvements in their symptoms as soon as 2-4 weeks post-treatment. Abnormal or damaged collagen takes 9-12 months to completely heal, but patients should experience less pain and increased mobility within 4-6 weeks. More concrete improvements can be identified by patients in as soon as 12 weeks post-treatment. Visual improvements can be seen with MRI, X-ray or ultrasound approximately 12 months after treatment.
Request Your Consultation
Patients looking for sports injury and joint pain treatment in Rochester, NY travel from Buffalo, Syracuse, and beyond to our regenerative medicine practice in Victor for treatment. Request a consultation using the online form or call
(585) 244-1506 to schedule an appointment with our joint pain specialists.