Allowing the body to heal itself can take a long time, and surgery is not always the best option. The goal of regenerative medicine at Raleigh Orthopaedic is to provide cutting-edge technology to stimulate and accelerate the healing process. When non-operative options have failed, our providers may prescribe platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections or other therapeutic injections, such as MSCs, to help reduce pain, restore function and potentially help delay or avoid major surgery.
Raleigh Orthopaedic feels strongly that these treatments are investigational and need to be delivered with significant patient education and informed consent. With our research-based approach, we set patient expectations of effectiveness using evidence-based estimates from existing science and literature.
Common Areas of Treatment:
- Tendon or Ligament injury
- Muscle Strains
- Articular Cartilage Injury
What are platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections?
PRP injections, or platelet-rich plasma, come from your own blood to promote a healthier joint environment. Platelets are cells in your blood that have a lot of growth factors and anti-inflammatory agents, both of which help the body to heal.
For PRP, a sample of your blood is taken. The sample is processed to concentrate the platelets together into the plasma (a layer of your blood), which is then injected into the part of your body that needs healing. The concentration of platelets can be two to ten times greater (or richer) than the patient’s blood. These injections have been shown to create a less inflammatory environment in the injured body part, which can result in less pain and improved function.
What are MSCs?
Mesenchymal stem cells are a specific type of cell in your body. They line blood vessels, and the type used for therapeutic injections can most easily be found in bone marrow, fat, and amniotic fluid. When injected into an injured or diseased joint or tissue, they do not turn into other types of cells. Instead, they send out signals to the body to decrease inflammation, pain, and infection.
A screening appointment is needed to determine if you are a candidate for therapeutic injections. The screening appointment may involve x-rays and an MRI. Your Raleigh Orthopaedic provider will then determine if therapeutic injections are right for you. A separate appointment will be scheduled for the actual procedure. Currently most insurance policies do not cover therapeutic injections since they are considered investigational.