Playing sports and engaging in regular exercise is good for your health. Unfortunately, when you push your body physically, you’re at greater risk of injury. Like any active person, you may find the recovery process after a sports injury difficult, especially if it’s taking longer than expected for your body to heal.
Dedicated to supporting your recovery efforts, the team of health care experts at Orthopedic & Wellness in Frederick, Waldorf, and Germantown, Maryland, offer platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy for sports injuries.
All about PRP
A 2018 article published in Skin Appendage Disorders notes that PRP was discovered in the 1970s and used by hematologists as a transfusion treatment for patients with a low blood platelet count. It wasn’t until 10 years later that doctors realized the healing potential of PRP. Today, it’s most often used to help support recovery from sports injuries.
What is PRP exactly? It’s a solution created from a sample of your own blood that has a high concentration of platelets.
The platelets that circulate in your blood are best known for blood clotting and stopping your wounds from bleeding. But the tiny cells also contain growth factors and specialized proteins that naturally heal injured or damaged tissue.
When injected into an injury site, the healing properties in the concentrated PRP amplify your body’s natural repair process.
PRP therapy for sports injuries
Every year more than 8 million people are injured playing sports or some other recreational activity. Though sports injuries vary, the most common affect the musculoskeletal system, such as:
Many professional athletes have used PRP therapy to heal a range of sports injuries, such as knee sprains and chronic tendon injuries. They report that PRP therapy helped them get back to their sport faster.
What to expect with PRP therapy
We perform your PRP therapy at our office. First, we draw a sample of blood from your arm and use a centrifuge to create the PRP we use for your therapy. Once ready, we inject the PRP directly into your injured tissue. We may use guided-imaging tools (ultrasound or X-ray) to ensure accurate placement of the PRP.
After your injection, it’s not unusual to experience some swelling and pain. Though there’s no downtime following your PRP therapy, we recommend that you avoid any heavy exercise for a few weeks.
You should start to notice an improvement in your injury about three weeks after your injection, with continued improvements over the next several months. We have you return to the office regularly to monitor your progress. We may add physical therapy to your treatment plan to help you get back to your active lifestyle as quickly as possible.
Don’t let your sports injury keep you from doing what you love. Book an appointment by phone or online at the office nearest you to schedule your PRP therapy consultation.