Millions of people around the world suffer from lower back pain. Many people have a hard time finding treatment that works for them. If you haven’t had success with other treatments, you might want to try PRP therapy. PRP therapy has many benefits with minimal side effects.
PRP stands for platelet-rich plasma. PRP therapy has been used since the mid-1990’s in dental and oral surgery. It’s used to aid in soft tissue recovery after plastic surgery. Today, PRP therapy is being used in sports medicine.
PRP injections use your own blood. Your blood contains bioactive proteins that’ll help your healing process. It’ll get you back to your normal state with little-to-no downtime.
Before you receive the injection, your blood will get separated. Portions of plasma will be removed and mixed with platelets. The blood will then be injected at the site of the injury while using help from a fluoroscope or ultrasonic guide. The entire procedure takes one to two hours.
PRP therapy promotes tissue regeneration when plasma is injected at injury sites. PRP strengthens joints, repairs ligaments and tendons, increases mobility and reduces pain. You should notice a significant improvement within approximately two weeks. You may need to complete the process two to three times to get your desired results.
People who have muscle strains, muscle fibrosis in their back or have damaged tendons and ligaments in their back will benefit from PRP therapy. PRP therapy isn’t effective for people for people who have damaged discs, compression of nerve roots, herniated discs, degenerative disc disease or spinal stenosis.
Unfortunately, days after you receive the injection, you’ll notice a notable increase in pain. Your pain intensity will decrease each day as your functional mobility and general functional mobility increase with strength and endurance. After two to six weeks, you’ll notice a gradual improvement. Some people have reported an increased improvement six to nine months after PRP therapy.
Ultrasound and MRI images shown in some studies have proven that definite repair tissue has occurred after PRP therapy. These images supported the proof of the healing process.
Sometimes, PRP therapy isn’t a substitute for surgery. Many chronic conditions respond well to PRP therapy meaning that some people don’t need surgery, but other patients may not be as lucky. It’s impossible to predict who will respond well to the procedure and who won’t.
A chronic condition means that tendons or ligaments in your body have excessive scar tissue. When this happens, you may have impaired joint function. The tendons or ligaments in your body will be vulnerable to another injury or complete disruption. In some cases, tendons or ligaments won’t heal because the area of injury isn’t receiving enough blood supply. Most tendons don’t have enough blood supply, and they’re prone to microscopic tears or chronic scarring. PRP therapy makes your chronic condition think that you have a new injury. When your body has a new injury, it provokes a new and renewed healing process. With PRP therapy and appropriate reconditioning, PRP therapy may improve the chance of healing, and it’ll eliminate the possibility for escalation of the injury. If you receive positive results from PRP therapy, it may decrease the chances of you needing surgery.
Unfortunately, many insurance companies don’t cover the cost of PRP therapy yet. If they do, you’ll likely be reimbursed for the treatment which means that you have to pay out-of-pocket costs first. The cost of PRP therapy can vary widely depending on where you live and on how the injections are used. Currently, insurance companies consider PRP as an experimental treatment. More scientific research will need to be done to prove its effectiveness before more insurance companies begin to cover the treatment.
Since PRP therapy involves injecting a substance in your skin, it can cause potential side effects. PRP injections are done with your own blood. Having your own blood injected in your skin reduces the risk of an allergic reaction that can occur from injecting other medications. The potential side effects from the injection include:
PRP therapy may or may not help you. Everyone’s body responds differently to PRP therapy. PRP therapy can be used for a variety of other chronic conditions other than lower back pain. More studies are being done to see the effectiveness of therapy.
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