There is some controversy as to the effectiveness of platelet rich plasma therapy however many people who have had this therapy report satisfactory results. Athletes such as Tiger Woods and the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Hines Ward have undergone platelet-rich plasma therapy to speed up the healing process when they were keen to get back to competitive sport as soon as possible. Some patients respond better to this kind of treatment which may have led to the mixed feelings about its success as a treatment.
Platelet rich plasma treatment takes a small amount of the patient’s blood after which they spin it in a centrifuge to separate the platelet rich plasma from the other components of the blood. They then inject this plasma into the site of the patients injury, because platelets secrete growth related substances, which aid in rapid tissue recovery. As the techniques works in conjunction with the patient’s own immune system it will work better on people with a healthily boosted immune system, a good diet and someone who is not suffering shock as a result of an accident or trauma.
Platelet rich plasma therapy has been used since the early 1990s for spinal injury recovery after surgery and in the repair of soft tissue after surgery. It is only in recent years that this therapy has been used for sports injuries where the patients are usually in a better general condition than spinal injury patients. Healthy young athletes respond well to the treatments.
Research continues into this area of treatment and results of further studies should be an indication of the overall effectiveness and usefulness of this treatment. The treatment is not to be confused with human growth hormone (HGH) injections which are illegal in the United States. Platelet rich plasma treatment is perfectly safe, completely legal and is always extracted from the same person having the treatment.