Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy: Explained

What You Need to Know About Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy

If you are reading this, chances are good that you looked up the phrase “prp meaning” on the internet or your doctor recommended platelet rich plasma (PRP) therapy to treat a condition. You may be interested in gaining more information about PRP, or trying to decide if this innovative treatment is right for you. Fortunately, the health professionals at BackFit perform PRP and are always glad to share information about the safe, effective procedure.


PRP Meaning

Platelet rich plasma is a non-surgical solution to a variety of conditions affecting the muscles, bones and connective tissue of the musculoskeletal system. PRP uses the body’s own natural healing process.

Blood is a complex fluid that delivers oxygen and nutrients to the cells of your body. Plasma is the clear, straw-colored liquid part of your blood that holds cellular components, including red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.

Platelets are small disk-shaped cell fragments that come together to form clots that stop bleeding. Platelets are also rich in a type of proteins, known as growth factors, which promote healing.


The Procedure

PRP is a simple and painless procedure that highly trained health professionals perform in outpatient office settings. The entire process, starting from the blood draw to preparation of the PRP solution takes only 25 to 30 minutes. For the patient, the procedure is similar to a routine blood test.

First, blood will be drawn from the patient and then modified so that the blood contains more of the patient’s platelets than usual. In fact, the concentration of platelets in the plasma can be 5 to 10 times higher. The high concentration of platelets in PRP is what makes this therapy special.

After drawing only a small amount of the patient’s blood, the health care provider places the blood sample into a centrifuge. This machine spins the blood at very high speeds, which separates blood into red blood cells and concentrated platelets. The health care professional removes the red blood cells from the liquid portion of the blood, known as plasma, leaving behind plasma that is rich in platelets. This platelet rich plasma is now ready for use in the treatment process.

The health care professional then injects the platelet rich plasma back into the patient. For the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions, the practitioner will inject the PRP plasma directly into the affected area. These areas are usually damaged ligaments, tendons and joints. There, the platelets promote tissue repair and accelerate healing of damaged tissues.


PRP Therapy Safely, Effectively Treats a Number of Musculoskeletal Conditions

PRP is safe and effective for several musculoskeletal conditions, including:

  • Rotator cuff injuries, which affect the shoulder
  • Shoulder pain, shoulder instability
  • Hamstring problems
  • Hip strains
  • Knee sprains
  • Knee instability
  • Patellofemoral syndrome and patellar tendonitis, which are types of knee problems
  • Tennis and golfer’s elbow
  • Ankle sprains
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Plantar fasciitis, which affects the layer of tissue lining the bottom of the foot
  • Knee, hip, and other joint osteoarthritis
  • Lumbar spine disc pain that affects the rubbery discs cushioning the bones of the lower spine
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and other nerve entrapment syndromes
  • Lumbar pain associated with joint problems in the lower spine

PRP therapy may be right for patients who experience tendon pain that affects daily activities, whose physical therapy has not helped improve function or reduce pain, or when other non-surgical treatments have failed. PRP may also be appropriate for those who are sensitive to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), who do not experience adequate pain relief from those medicines, or who want to avoid long-term use of these drugs. Platelet rich plasma therapy may also be right for patients who do not want or cannot undergo surgery.


Only trained health care professionals should administer PRP. While the PRP procedure is quick and easy for the patient, it requires in-depth knowledge of the procedures.

For a complimentary assessment to find out if PRP is right for you, or to schedule PRP treatment, contact BackFit. Our fully trained medical staff is ready to carry out PRP and other in-house medical procedures that reduce pain and improve mobility.

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