PRP Treatments for Cartilage Repair – Get Relief from Joint Pain and Better Mobility
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that close to 54.4 million or 1 in 4 Americans has some form of joint pain. Statistics also show that at least half of the affected people find it difficult to perform their daily tasks at home or work. If you have been finding it hard to move or keep up with the demands of daily living, consider looking at PRP treatments for cartilage repair as a solution. Keep in mind that joint pain can be of any kind including pain in the knee, ankle, wrist, elbow, hip, shoulder, or any other.
Joint Pain Typically Involves Cartilage Erosion
Doctors estimate that the leading cause of joint pain is Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). RA is an umbrella term that covers conditions like arthritis, osteoporosis, and any other problems that affect the connecting tissues in the body. All of these conditions typically involve the erosion of cartilage in the joint. Nature has equipped your joints with caps of articular cartilage and buffering agents that prevent the ends of the bones from rubbing against one another when you move.
As long as these agents are intact, you can move freely because the cartilage acts like a shock-absorbing system. But, any damage or tears in this tissue can lead to the bones touching one another and causing pain, inflammation, and difficulty in movement. PRP treatments for cartilage repair may be one of the most effective solutions. That’s because Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) can repair the structure of the cartilage and restore the worn buffering agents.
Cartilage Erodes Because of Various Causes
Articular cartilage is a tough tissue but it can erode because of different causes such as:
- Dysfunction of the immune system
- Genetic propensity
- Skewed metabolism
- Infections and diseases that target the joints
- Improper healing after an injury like a sprain, strain, or even microfracture
- Age-related factors
- Sports-related factors that often include repeated movements of the joint
PRP Treatments for Cartilage Repair Use the Body’s Healing Mechanism
PRP treatments for cartilage repair is a safe method that uses the tissues of the patient’s body to create a special serum that can initiate the healing process. Platelet Rich Plasma for articular degeneration contains all the essential growth factors that act as a scaffolding for the cartilage to regenerate. Should you research what is PRP, you’ll find that these growth factors also stop the further erosion of the cartilage. They include:
- Chondrocytes: Cells that make up cartilage
- Mesenchymal stem cells: Basic cells that make up tissues
- White blood cells: Fight infections in the treatment site
- Dense storage granules: Contain serotonin that lowers pain levels and calcium, a mineral essential for tissue repair
- Insulin-like growth factors that are essential for tissue regeneration
Doctors Create Different Forms of Platelet Rich Plasma
Platelet Rich Plasma is a highly versatile healing serum. By varying the PRP preparation methods, doctors can create any one of the four kinds of PRP such as:
- Pure PRP in liquid form
- Leukocyte-rich PRP in liquid form
- Pure Platelet Rich Fibrin (PRF) in gel form
- Leukocyte-rich PRF in gel form
PRP treatments for cartilage repair make use of Leukocyte-rich Platelet Rich Fibrin. This PRP gel is extracted by using the single-spin method and contains a high amount of white blood cells that prevent infections at the treatment site. L-PRF brings about multiple effects:
- Induces the body to create more cartilage
- Changes the body’s pain receptors so the patient feels less pain
- Natural serotonin lowers pain
- Stimulates the body to produce lubricating agents to reduce friction between the bones
- Reduces inflammation and produces new cells for healing
Doctors Administer Platelet Rich Plasma Using Different Techniques
The L-PRF used in repairing cartilage is in pure gel form without the addition of any anti-clotting or activating agents. Doctors have successfully used as PRP injections in dental care and PRP in orthopedics to heal bone fractures. They carefully place the PRF in the treatment site where it not only initiates the healing process but also signals to the body that the area needs repair. The body responds by flooding the area with the various compounds needed to create cartilage.
PRP Combined with Microfractures
Doctors may also use the microfracture technique in PRP treatments for cartilage repair to induce the healing of the soft tissue. They drill minute holes in and around the damaged cartilage in the joints. Next, they place freshly-created L-PRF on the puncture sites. By attracting stem cells to the treatment area, PRF works to heal the torn cartilage, reduce inflammation, and ease the pain.
PRP Treatments for Cartilage Repair are Effective
Typically, PRP therapy for articular degeneration can be completed in one to two hours and is an outpatient procedure. You will not have to take time off from work and you can return to your usual activities right away. Once the healing process is initiated, you will notice gradual improvement as the pain eases and you have better mobility. Diagnostic imaging tests like MRIs and ultrasounds have demonstrated that PRP treatments are effective in repairing cartilage.
Have you been looking for a solution for joint pain? Do you know someone who has tried PRP treatments for knee pain or any other issue? Talk to us about your experiences.