Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy

Platelet-rich plasma therapy is making the headlines left and right these days, but why? High profile athletes such as Tiger Woods have reportedly undergone PRP therapy, as well as Daron Rahlves who suffered a dislocated hip skiing but later was able to compete in the 2010 Olympics only a few weeks later.

PRP therapy is a method of using blood with high levels of platelets containing growth factors and injecting the injured area for accelerated healing and regeneration.

This short video clip shows this process being performed in response to a "tennis elbow" injury:

So does it work? It seems to be case by case at this point. A recent Achilles tendinopathy/PRP injection study in the Netherlands concluded that PRP therapy was no more beneficial than the placebo tested, though as noted below the article this may have been a flawed study.

Board Certified Orthopedic surgeon Jeff O'Brien writes "Recent clinical studies support the laboratory evidence related to the use of PRP. Elbow conditions, specifically tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow, have shown improvement in pain as well as athletic performance after one PRP injection." (PRP Effective In Treating Difficult Tendon Problems).

Have you had any experience with Platelet-rich plasma therapy? Tell us about it.