When an overuse injury causes trauma or arthritis leads to degeneration, you might face so much joint discomfort that it limits your mobility. If joint issues are disrupting your life, it’s time to look past standard pain relief solutions.
If you’re done masking your joint pain with medications and you like the idea of repairing your damaged tissues using your body’s own healing mechanisms, then platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy may be just the solution.
Whether getting older has left you with persistent knee pain, your desk job makes your elbow feel sore, or a recent rotator cuff injury makes it hard to sleep at night, our team at RVA Regenerative Wellness helps people with joint pain throughout Midlothian, Virginia.
Here, PRP specialist Jennylle Zanzi, FNP-C, explains how PRP therapy works and how it treats joint trauma and age-related degeneration to help you restore pain-free mobility.
Platelet-rich plasma 101
By volume, your blood is mostly liquid (plasma). But suspended in that colorless fluid are a variety of small, solid components, including red cells, white cells, and platelets.
Your platelets, which play a critical role in the clotting process when you’re injured, are filled with hundreds of growth factors and other bioactive proteins that actively encourage cellular repair and tissue regeneration.
PRP is a therapeutic and healing serum that’s made by spinning a small amount of your blood in a centrifuge machine to separate out the platelets. This dense serum contains many times more platelets and growth factors than your normal, circulating blood.
How PRP therapy works
When we mix PRP with a tiny amount of plasma (for liquidity) and carefully inject the solution into a painful or injured joint, its growth factors and bioactive proteins get straight to work, vigorously stimulating local stem cell activity, tissue renewal, and accelerated healing.
Growth factor power
Experts are still studying the exact mechanisms that make PRP so effective at speeding up your body’s natural healing process. What they have learned, however, is that injecting concentrated blood platelets into an injured area triggers an exponential increase in various potent growth factors at the treatment site, including:
- Platelet-derived growth factors (PDGFs)
- Transforming growth factors (TGFs)
- Vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGFs)
- Insulin-like growth factors (IGFs)
These powerful growth factors enhance soft tissue recovery, promote the formation of new blood vessels, nurture connective tissue repair, and encourage healing.
PRP therapy for joint pain
PRP therapy can treat a variety of joint problems, ranging from acute injuries and long-standing trauma to the damaging degenerative changes triggered by arthritis.
By flooding an injured or damaged joint with healing growth factors, PRP therapy can help strengthen weak ligaments, ease tendon inflammation, and repair strained muscles.
PRP is especially effective for treating persistent tendon injuries, such as tennis elbow, Achilles tendonitis, and shoulder tendonitis. We can also use PRP to treat the following problems:
- Knee pain: Meniscal tears, ACL, MCL, LCL, and kneecap instability
- Shoulder pain: Labral tears, rotator cuff injuries, and bursitis
- Lower back pain: Sacroiliac dysfunction and facet joint problems
- Hip pain: Labral tears, bursitis, and tendonitis
- Ankle and foot pain: Sprains, strains, and Achilles dysfunction
- Wrist and hand pain: Carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and ligament tears
Much like a cortisone steroid injection, PRP decreases inflammation and provides fast pain relief. But unlike steroid joint injections, PRP harnesses your body’s own mechanisms to stimulate healing, giving you an effective, long-lasting, and natural way to treat joint pain.
Natural, safe, and effective
When it comes to healing tissue damage and providing effective relief for persistent joint pain, PRP is an all-natural therapy that offers a safe and effective alternative to traditional treatment solutions like pain medication and surgery.
PRP has many uses that go beyond joint pain, too. The same properties that make PRP therapy so effective for healing damaged joints also make it a useful anti-aging serum: PRP is a potent hair restoration solution as well as an outstanding skin rejuvenation treatment.
As PRP specialists, we offer a full scope of PRP solutions at RVA Regenerative Wellness in Midlothian, Virginia. To learn how PRP therapy can help you, call 786-971-0914 today, or use our online booking feature to schedule a consultation any time.