Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy
A New Non-Surgical Service at Center for Foot & Ankle Surgery
Dr. Jose A. Rivera and Dr. Charles J. Hubbard are now offering a new non-surgical service
called Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy or Regenerative Injection Therapy to their
patients. PRP Therapy is an autologous blood therapy that uses a patient’s own blood
components to stimulate a healing response in damaged tissue.
PRP is an emerging treatment in a new health sector known as “orthobiologics.” The philosophy
is to merge cutting edge technology with the body’s natural ability to heal itself. PRP has the
potential to revolutionize not just sports medicine but all of orthopaedics. The PRP method
centers on injecting portions of a patient’s blood directly into the injured area, which catalyzes
the body’s instincts to repair muscle, bone and other tissue. Most enticing is that the technique
appears to help regenerate ligament and tendon fibers, which could shorten rehabilitation time
and possibly obviate surgery.
When a tissue injury occurs, platelets collect at the site and begin the clotting cycle. More
importantly, these activated platelets release numerous growth factors that are directly
responsible for tissue regeneration. Therefore, by increasing the concentration of these platelets,
we can deliver a powerful mixture of growth factors directly to the injured tissue and
dramatically enhance the body’s natural healing process. This treatment may lead to a more
rapid, more efficient, and more thorough restoration of the tissue to a healthy state.
PRP is obtained by drawing a sample of blood from the patient and placing it into a centrifuge
that separates the red blood cells from the platelets. This technology yields a high concentration
of platelets and white blood cells that is 5-7 times normal. A local anesthetic is applied to the
area followed by PRP injection.
What Patients Can Expect After PRP Treatments:
Often, following the initial injection, an "achy" soreness is felt at the site of injury. This
"soreness" is a positive sign that a healing response has been set in motion. This effect can
last for several days and gradually decreases as healing and tissue repair occurs. It is
important that anti inflammatory medications such as Ibuprofen, Naproxen and Aspirin
be avoided following PRP treatments. These medicines may block the effects of the intended
healing response facilitated by the injection itself. It is acceptable to use Tylenol and apply ice
and elevation as needed. Patients will be permitted to resume normal day to day activities and
light exercise following injection. We suggest that patients avoid strenuous lifting or high level
exercise for at least several days after the injection.
This treatment is not a “quick fix” and is designed to promote long-term healing of the injured
tissue. The regeneration of collagen takes 8-12 months and may require multiple injections.
For most cases only one injection is required. Pain and functional recovery is assessed 3-4
weeks after the injection to determine further therapy needs.
Safety of the Treatment:
Research and clinical data show that PRP injections are extremely safe, with minimal risk for
any adverse reaction or complication. There is little chance for rejection or allergic reaction
because the substance is autologous. The injection carries far less chance for infection than
an incision and leaves no scar, and it takes only about 20 minutes, with a considerably
shorter recovery time than after surgery.
Below is a list of the areas currently being treated with PRP Therapy in our office:
Foot and Ankle Pain
1. Chronic Achilles Tendinitis
2. Chronic Plantar Fasciitis
3. Tendon Ruptures
4. Ankle sprains
5. Partial or Complete ligament tears