PRP injections are platelet-rich plasma injections. This is where a blood sample is taken from a patient then placed in a centrifuge to separate the platelets from the rest of the blood. Blood is mostly a liquid but, there are solid aspects to it such as red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Platelets are growth factors in the blood which promote natural healing of the body. Platelets are usually known for clotting the blood when a wound occurs. However, they are also factors that help heal the body. Once removed from the centrifuge, the concentrated platelets are then injected into the affected area, effectively bathing the area in a rich dose of platelets.
PRP injections have been said to be effective due to the high concentration of platelets being introduced into an affected area. Since these are already a natural healing agent inside our body, flooding an injured area has shown to speed up the process of healing. Elite athletes have been using the method for a while now and most swear by it. Of course, there is still skepticism lingering among the medical community on the rate of success.
There are very few side effects to platelet-rich plasma injections. Since it’s a non-surgical treatment for injuries, especially those involved in the joint with inflammation, it’s considered low risk and non-invasive. Some side effects include nausea, dizziness, and passing out. Since a person’s own blood is used for the injection, there’s no risk of an allergic reaction. Of course, each person is different and will have varying circumstances related to their injury. It’s always important to speak with your doctor about their options and what they suggest as far as your specific case goes.
It’s important to note that not all injuries are treatable with PRP injections. It’s also important to note that many PRP injections aren’t covered by medical insurance. However, Medicare and Medicaid do offer coverage on certain PRP injections depending on the circumstances. It’s common for patients to not be able to pay out of pocket since PRP injections can range from $500-$2000 depending on the circumstances. Therefore, the payment aspect is definitely a factor when it comes to knowing if PRP injections are the right choice for you. If you plan on getting PRP injections and have already spoken to your doctor, it’s a good idea to consult your medical coverage. Some medical insurance companies will approve treatments, not on their list which is a route some people like to take.
PRP injections have proven to be an effective treatment to injuries, especially those found in the joints. This is why it’s common among athletes. The success rate speaks for itself. However, as mentioned, not all injuries can be improved with PRP injections and consulting a doctor is always best as far as picking the perfect treatment for you and your circumstances.