Meet Tim. Tim loves tennis, pickleball, and hiking.
The problem? His hip started to not enjoy it quite as much as he did.
Over a stretch of about six months he developed a deep aching and pinching sensation in the hip joint limiting his ability to be on the court and in the mountains. This was frustrating for such an active guy.
He was seen by a couple of physicians, had physical therapy, and a couple of standard cortisone injections with little if any improvement. He still couldn’t get back on the court without pain and paying for it afterward. The orthopedic surgeon was telling him surgery may be the next step. Tim did not want anything to do with surgery, especially if there was no guarantee he was going to be better.
After a thorough consultation and review of his prior imaging and treatments, I recommended using Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy to treat the underlying problem I believed was contributing to his hip pain.
What is Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy?
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy is a Regenerative Medicine treatment used to repair chronic degenerative joints, ligaments and tendon injuries. PRP is a blood product concentration of the platelets, growth factors and other healing cells derived from your own blood.
The concentrated platelets found in PRP contain huge reservoirs of bioactive proteins, including growth factors, that are vital to initiate and accelerate tissue repair and regeneration. These bioactive proteins initiate connective tissue healing in bone, tendon and ligament, stimulate regeneration and repair, promote development of new blood vessels, and new collagen formation to stimulate connective tissue and cartilage repair.
What conditions can be treated with PRP?
- Overuse injuries to joints including ankles, knees, hips and shoulders
- Overuse injuries of muscle tendons and ligaments
- Joint arthritis
- Spine arthritis
- Persistent neck, mid-back, and low back pain
- Pain associated with degenerative disc disease of the spine
More specific injuries commonly treated include:
- Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylosis)
- Golfer’s elbow (medial epicondylosis)
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Knee ligament tears
- Shin splints
- Partial thickness rotator cuff tears
- Plantar fasciitis
- Patellar tendinitis or tendonopathy
- Achilles tendonitis
- IT band syndrome
- Hip bursitis (greater trochanter pain syndrome)
PRP injections are performed with ultrasound guidance to precisely target the treatment at specific areas of damage in the injured tissue(s).
How does PRP work?
PRP is a non-surgical and non-invasive effective treatment that works on a very simple principle. Injecting concentrated platelets containing specific growth factors can wake up your body’s own natural healing response and orchestrate repair mechanisms to heal injured tissues. Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) targets the source of pain while healing and regenerating injured tissue.
How is PRP made for the procedure?
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is is formed by drawing a small amount of blood from your arm, similar to a blood donation if you have ever donated blood. The amount of blood drawn varies depending on the tissue to be treated, but is commonly less than a third of what you would typically donate.
The blood is then put in a centrifuge machine that separates out the activated platelets, growth factors and the healing cells to obtain platelet rich plasma (PRP) and platelet poor plasma (PPP). The PRP produced is injected back into your body the same day.
Why is PRP so effective for healing acute or chronic injuries?
Joint, ligament and tendon injuries can take a significant amount of time to heal. If activity is resumed to quickly (very commonly by taking pain medications or getting cortisone injections) before complete healing has occurred, the damaged ligaments or tendons can remain loose, contributing to dysfunctional mechanics and further injury and degeneration.
Arthritis may develop in the joints and spine as a result of instability in the ligaments and the supporting structures. This is where PRP can be used to intervene and stabilize the structures, decreasing the progression of pain as well as potentially rapid aging of the joint.
With PRP we are harnessing your body’s ability to heal, and accelerate the repair and rebuilding of healthy tissue. This will lead to stronger, more supportive, and more resilient muscle, tendon, ligament, and joint structures, in time less pain, and significantly improved function.
So what happened to Tim?
After a single treatment he reported 90% improvement in pain, and following his second treatment 6 weeks later, he reported zero pain in the hip.
About a week ago I ran into Tim at a lecture I was giving out in the community. I was teaching the audience about Regenerative Medicine, and treatments such as stem cell therapy and platelet rich plasma (PRP) therapy.
Unsolicited, Tim offered to share his story with the audience at the end of the talk.
How is the hip? Still pain-free and allowing him to play tennis, pickleball and golf six days per week.
The results for Tim with such a simple (for those of us trained to do it), non-surgical, and minimally invasive treatment were truly life-changing allowing him to quickly return to his passions in life.
Be like Tim. See Tim Run. See Tim enjoy life again.
Committed to delivering leading edge non-surgical and minimally-invasive treatments for your joint pain – to get you back to enjoying life again.
P.S. We are the only clinic in southwest Arizona dedicated to Regenerative Medicine treatments including platelet rich plasma (PRP) treatments. We do not dabble. We deliver leading edge treatments to help you get back to dominating your passions in life.