13 Oct Knee Sprain Treatment with Platelet-Rich Plasma
The use of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) in the management of joint-related conditions is one of the most impressive advancements in medicine. PRP is used in knee sprain treatment protocols to help regenerate anatomical structures and tissues that have been damaged due to trauma or injury to the joint.
How does PRP work?
PRP is derived from the patient’s own blood that is spun down in a centrifuge machine. The blood is then separated in the blood tube and the content that is used is the plasma of the blood that contains platelet cells and growth factors. This fluid is then developed into an injectable form and administered in the affected area.
There are four different types of PRP that can be used to manage conditions such as knee ligament injuries. These include leukocyte (white cell)-rich and depleted PRP, pure platelet-rich fibrin, and leukocyte platelet-rich fibrin. There are also various hormones and proteins present in these PRPs which help to improve the outcome of the patient’s relevant injury.
What are the benefits of PRP?
The benefits of PRP include facilitating tissue repair in damaged joints and using growth factors to stimulate stem cells to travel to the injured areas and repair them.
Injecting with PRP is a minimally invasive procedure that has a high success rate.
Efficacy of PRP therapy
Sportsmen and -women, who sustained knee ligament injuries, especially where the collateral ligaments are involved, seem to do very well when PRP injection knee protocols are initiated.
In one case, an elite European football player who sustained a high-grade tear of his medial collateral ligament (MCL) was treated with multiple PRP injections in the knee, and this was followed up with physical rehabilitation of the joint. He was able to resume pain-free training 18 days after the injury with a full range of motion of the previously injured knee. At day 25 after the injury, he was fit to participate in matches and experienced no functional deficits or residual symptoms. At his 16 month follow up visit there were no issues or complications noted by the player or his healthcare team.
In fact, there are many studies stating that PRP therapy is extremely effective in treating pathologies such as knee ligament strains and injuries, and arthritic changes with as little as two injections.
Other indications for PRP injections
PRP therapy is used for various joint-related conditions, but it can also be used to treat acute and chronic pain disorders, as well as dermatological pathologies. These include the following:
- Golfer’s elbow.
- Tennis elbow.
- Inflammation of tendons (tendinitis).
- Inflammation of a bursa (bursitis).
- To improve wound healing.
- Plantar fasciitis.
- Runner’s knee.
- Male pattern baldness.
PRP therapy and sports bodies
In the United States, the National Basketball Associated (NBA), Major League Baseball (MLB), and the National Football League (NFL) all determined that PRP therapy is a reasonable treatment for sport-related joint injuries, and do not consider this treatment as a performance-enhancing drug.