Akash Bajaj, MD is proud to head the team of highly trained medical professionals at Remedy Spine & Pain Solutions, located in Marina del Rey, California. His practice has built its reputation on delivering outstanding results. Patients throughout Los Angeles and the country find relief from debilitating pain anywhere in... more
Empirical evidence suggests that platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is a viable medical intervention strategy for orthopedic use. PRP is a concentration of alpha-granules of platelets, which contains growth factors implicated in immune response, coagulation, angiogenesis, in addition to tissue regeneration.1 The regeneration capacity of tissue is variable depending on its location, function, and susceptibility to injury. For example, the musculoskeletal system, i.e. bones and muscle, is less capable of undergoing regeneration following injury. If the musculoskeletal system is injured, an inflammation response will be induced that results in the release of many proliferating factors that contribute to regeneration.2 Most of the proliferating factors are growth factors that are functionally comparable to those found in platelet alpha-granules. The musculoskeletal system’s ability to generate these growth factors is a limited due to the decreased differentiation capacity of the tissue. Once an individual fully develops, their ability to regenerate muscle or bone tissue is diminished and injuries typically require months for full recovery.2
Traditionally, the methods of musculoskeletal tissue repair were limited to invasive techniques that did not always produce advantageous results. In 2010, more than 5.3 million orthopedic surgeries were completed to alleviate musculoskeletal dysfunction. By 2020, it is expected that more than 6.6 million orthopedic surgeries will be required due to an increased sedentary lifestyle and greater average lifespan.3 The increased need for orthopedic intervention has had a comparable impact on clinical research in the field. As stated above, PRP has been shown to be advantageous at accelerating tissue repair for alleviating symptoms associated with musculoskeletal dysfunction. Furthermore, stem cell therapy has also been introduced as a less invasive technique that can be highly beneficial for orthopedic use. Conditions involving arthritis, damaged muscle, torn tendons and ligaments, and vertebral disc deterioration have all benefited from the application of stem cell therapy.4 Both PRP and stem cell therapy are advantageous for correcting some musculoskeletal disorders and an in-depth consultation with one’s clinician will ensure that the most appropriate intervention strategy is selected.
- Filardo, G., Kon, E., Roffi, A., Di Matteo, B., Merli, M. L., & Marcacci, M. (2015). Platelet-rich plasma: why intra-articular? A systematic review of preclinical studies and clinical evidence on PRP for joint degeneration. Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy, 23(9), 2459-2474. doi: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0090538
- Tedesco, F. S., Dellavalle, A., Diaz-Manera, J., Messina, G., & Cossu, G. (2010). Repairing skeletal muscle: regenerative potential of skeletal muscle stem cells. The Journal of Clinical Investigation, 120(1), 11-19. doi: 10.1172/JCI40373
- Momohara, S., Inoue, E., Ikari, K., Ochi, K., Ishida, O., Yano, K., ... & Taniguchi, A. (2014). Recent trends in orthopedic surgery aiming to improve quality of life for those with rheumatoid arthritis: data from a large observational cohort. The Journal of Rheumatology, 41(5), 862-866. doi: https://doi.org/10.3899/jrheum.131018
- Bahney, C. S., & Miclau, T. (2012). Therapeutic potential of stem cells in orthopedics. Indian Journal of Orthopaedics, 46(1), 4-10. doi: 10.4103/0019-5413.91628