Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy is a type of regenerative therapy with both cosmetic and medical uses. Here at PRP in Philadelphia, Dr. Stuart Kauffman and our team use PRP therapy to help manage arthritis pain, treat sexual dysfunction, and promote healing after surgery. We also use PRP therapy to help treat sports injuries.
Let’s take a look at four sports injuries PRP therapy can help treat.
1. Achilles tendon injuries
Your Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in your body and connects your calf muscle with your heel bone. Achilles tendon pain can be the result of:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Achilles tendinosis
- Achilles tendon rupture
Your risk of Achilles tendon pain is increased with cold weather training, wearing the wrong shoes, increasing your training schedule too quickly, or participating in running sports.
2. Tendon injuries
Your arm is a complex part of your anatomy with many bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments that help you swing a bat, pitch a ball, or drive a golf ball down the fairway. When the tendons in your arm are overworked or stretched, it can lead to pain. Examples of tendon injuries in your arm include:
- Lateral epicondylitis: often referred to as tennis elbow but can be caused by weightlifting too
- Medial epicondylitis: also known as baseball elbow, golfer’s elbow, and even suitcase elbow
Both of these conditions cause pain and affect your athletic performance. Although both of these tendon injuries are common, they’re treatable. Rest, physical therapy, and injections can help improve your symptoms.
3. Knee injuries
PRP therapy can also help improve two common sports injuries that affect your knees:
- Medial collateral ligament (MCL) injuries
- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries
Stretching and tearing the ligaments in your knees is a common sports injury that happens if you stop too quickly and change direction, pivot with poor form, or land unevenly after a jump. Depending on the grade (severity) of your ligament injury, symptoms include pain, swelling, feeling that your knee will give out, and instability.
4. Rotator cuff injuries
PRP therapy doesn’t just help ligaments and tendons: it can also help treat muscle injuries. This includes rotator cuff injuries. Your rotator cuff is a group of four muscles in your shoulder that are responsible for stabilizing your shoulder, rotating your arm, and helping keep your humerus secure in the socket.
How PRP therapy helps sports injuries
Platelets are a natural component in your blood designed to help control bleeding and promote clotting. When your platelets are activated, they change shape from their normal “plate” shape into more of a “spider leg” shape. In their activated shape, they help stop bleeding at the site of your injury.
Because of the healing factors in your PRP serum, this type of regenerative therapy can help reduce pain from your soft tissue injury. Platelets help promote your body’s natural healing mechanisms and can even help you avoid surgery.
To learn more about PRP therapy and see if it’s the right path for managing your sports injury, schedule a consultation at our Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, office. Call or request an appointment online today.