Plasma therapy: No new knees needed - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Plasma therapy: No new knees needed

(Source: Ivanhoe Newswire) (Source: Ivanhoe Newswire)

BEND, OR (Ivanhoe Newswire/WTVM) - Most of us don’t think about our tendons and ligaments until we tear or damage them. Surgery used to be a common fix, but a non-surgical solution is gaining support among professional athletes and weekend warriors. Here’s how your own blood can help heal you.

Whether he’s skiing or fishing, Craig Apregan relishes every moment he spends in nature.

But the price for that pleasure is a set of worn-out knees.

“I wanted to increase the time or prolong the time in which I needed new knees,” say Apregan.

So he turned to a new approach, platelet rich plasma injection therapy or PRP, where a patient’s blood is withdrawn, platelets are separated, concentrated and re-injected into the injured area.

Dr. Ronald Rosen at Open Paths Integrative Medicine in Bend, Oregon explains, “It causes a more potent inflammatory response because the platelets have substances that have helped this response that can build cartilage, heal ligaments and help with muscles too.”

This regenerative injection therapy, growing in popularity with professional athletes, isn’t a one-shot fix. Depending on the severity as many as six series of injections might be required, spaced about a month apart.

“This is a regeneration process and it takes time for the body to regenerate,” say Rosen.

“Knees got better,” Apregan says. “They don’t swell as much. I was able to ski long, ski hard, ski in the back country. It’s been absolutely wonderful.”

Besides being both much less invasive and expensive than surgery, PRP therapy heals tissue with minimal or no scarring and, unlike pain-relieving cortisone injections, does not cause any further degeneration of injured tissues or joints.

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