What are PRP Injections for Elbow?
Platelet rich plasma – more commonly known as PRP – injections are a non-surgical treatment option for chronic tendon injuries, acute ligament and muscle injuries. PRP injections combine modern technology with the body’s natural abilities for accelerated healing. PRP use among professional athletes, collegiate athletes and weekend warriors has become increasingly common.
Platelets, one of the four main components of a human’s blood, initiate tissue repair by releasing growth factors. These growth factors are a naturally occurring substance capable of stimulating cellular growth, proliferation, healing and cellular differentiation of chronic tendon injuries, acute ligament and muscle injuries.
How Do PRP Injections Treat Tennis and Golfer’s Elbow?
When non-surgical treatment options such as rest, ice and bracing do not improve symptoms, PRP injections to treat tennis and golfer’s elbow is a viable treatment alternative. Today, physicians use PRP injections to treat acute ligament injuries like tennis and golfer’s elbow.
To begin treatment, one of our trained physicians will remove a vial of blood, typically 30 milliliters. The patient’s blood is then spun in a centrifuge which is a machine that uses high speeds to separate the four main components of the blood. Once the components are separated, the platelet rich plasma is removed. The plasma is then injected into the elbow at the site of pain to allow the growth factors to recruit and increase the proliferation of reparative cells. In some cases, an “activating agent”, which is either thrombin or calcium chloride, will also be added into the injection.
The entire process takes less than 15 minutes. Response to treatment will vary with each patient. Most patients will require 1-3 sets of PRP injections. Each set of treatments is spaced 4-6 weeks apart. As PRP is obtained from your own blood, the risk of reaction is low. As with any injection, there is a small risk of injury to any structures in the area as well as a very small risk of infection.
If you are interested in PRP injections for elbow and live in the Dallas, Arlington, Fort Worth area, please contact OPTIMAL Pain & Regenerative Medicine®.