Use of Platelet-Rich Plasma for Joint Pain

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What Causes Joint Pain?

Joint pain most often develops in large joints like the hip, shoulder, and knee. The pain results from inflammatory conditions like arthritis, degenerative conditions like cartilage degeneration, or infections like bursitis. Joint trauma or injuries can also cause pain.

Joint pain can disrupt your normal daily activities and also limit movement. Platelet-Rich Plasma has proven to be effective in joint pain treatment. Qualified doctors at Jersey City orthopedics can help to determine whether you qualify for the Platelet-Rich Plasma treatment modality and therefore enable you to carry out your daily activities without pain.

What are the Treatment Modalities for Joint Pain?

Joint pain can vary from mild to severe. Treatment, therefore, will depend on whether your pain is mild or severe, and is aimed at decreasing inflammation and improving mobility. Mild joint pain does not last for a period of time exceeding two weeks and often responds well to over-the-counter painkillers or a hot/cold compress.

Physical therapy also helps to relieve mild joint pain because it helps to improve mobility. Severe joint pain refers to pain that lasts longer than 2-6 weeks.

Treatment modalities for severe joint pain include:

Steroid Injections

Ultrasound-guided steroid injections help to reduce inflammation and joint swelling, therefore relieving joint pain.

Peripheral Nerve Block

This helps to temporarily relieve pain when an anesthetic is injected near the nerve causing pain. Peripheral nerve blocks can be used in combination with the steroid injection to prolong the duration of pain relief.

How Does Platelet-Rich Plasma Relieve Joint Pain?

Platelet-Rich Plasma is made from the patient’s own blood where platelets are separated from whole blood, and then added to a small amount of plasma. It contains a larger amount of platelets than normal. PRP is a natural alternative to the use of corticosteroids in joint pain treatment.

Platelets have growth factors that stimulate the growth of new cells and tissues, resulting in a wound’s healing.

Before the procedure, the patient should not have used corticosteroids for 2-3 weeks prior, and they should also discontinue the use of NSAIDs and anticoagulants 5 days prior. They should also increase fluid intake.

Platelet-Rich Plasma also helps to reduce inflammation. The procedure uses an ultrasound to guide the injection of the plasma to areas of pain. It may take up to six weeks for this therapy to have an effect on the body. This method of pain treatment has been used successfully by athletes in the past.

This treatment modality has limited side effects because, for instance, the patient’s own blood is used in treatment, thus the body is unlikely to reject it. Patients may experience some soreness after the injections, mild nausea, and dizziness.

Platelet-Rich Plasma as a form of treatment may be contraindicated for some patients, for example, those suffering from anemia, platelet dysfunction disorders, blood and skin infections, and malignancies.

Conclusion

In summary, Platelet-Rich Plasma treatment modality is a safe procedure. This treatment modality has been effective in the treatment of joint pain, arthritis, and muscle and tendon injuries.

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