Regenerative Medicine

Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy & Prolotherapy

Regenerative Medicine - Platelet-Rich Plasma - PRP Therapy - Barrick Family Practice

The human body is made of billions of specialized cells that form organs, muscles, tendons, ligaments, joints, and bones. Each day these cells go through a degenerative and regenerative process. As older cells die, new cells are born from stem cells with the unique capability of being able to create multiple types of other cells.

What is Prolotherapy?

At Barrick Family Practice, we offer platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy and prolotherapy. Prolotherapy is a nonsurgical treatment that stimulates healing. Short for "proliferation therapy," prolotherapy is also known as nonsurgical ligament and tendon reconstruction, or regenerative injection therapy.

Prolotherapy stimulates the body's own natural healing mechanisms to repair injured musculoskeletal tissue. The treatment originated in the 1930s when Dr. Earl Gedney, an osteopathic surgeon, successfully treated his own severe hand injury. Prolotherapy works by injecting a mild irritant that promotes localized inflammation, in turn signaling the body to use its own natural healing mechanisms to repair injured and painful joint areas. Types of prolotherapy include dextrose prolotherapy and platelet-rich plasma prolotherapy.

What is Platelet-Rich Plasma?

Platelet-rich plasma is extracted from your body’s own blood and delivers a higher concentration of platelets specifically to the source of pain or injury. Created by bone marrow and are found in the bloodstream, platelets contain natural healing properties. Increased levels of growth factors have the potential to improve signaling and recruitment of cells. Platelets aid stem cells to promote healing and can be considered a “booster shot.”

PRP injections are done in our office, which will take about 35 minutes. Blood is drawn from the arm and then placed into a centrifuge, which separates the platelets and other beneficial growth factors so they can be concentrated, or enriched. The PRP is then injected directly into the area of pain or injury in your joint, muscle, ligament, or tendon.

You may be a good candidate for PRP therapy if you have been suffering from joint pain and want to improve your quality of life while avoiding invasive surgery. It is important to note that everyone’s body can respond to treatment differently.

Viscosupplementation

Viscosupplementation is the process of adding a lubricating, gel-like fluid into a painful joint to replace lost synovial fluid. This procedure can replace fluid loss in the joint due to arthritis, wear-and-tear, and aging.

What is hyaluronic acid?

Hyaluronic acid occurs naturally in the body and the synovial fluid. It serves as a cushion to protect joints from impact. Additionally, it is a lubricating agent that allows the bones to move smoothly across one another. With viscosupplementation, hyaluronic acid is added back into the joint to reduce pain, improve movement, and cushion the joint.

Who benefits from viscosupplementation?

Viscosupplementation is used to treat osteoarthritis of the knee, but it is sometimes used for other joints.

Some of the benefits of this procedure include:

  • Decreased pain in the joint
  • Improved walking, standing, and movement
  • Possibility of delaying or avoiding surgery
  • Improved overall quality of life

Treatment

Dr. Barrick can administer Viscosupplementation therapy during simple in-office visits. To perform the procedure, Dr. Barrick will inject HA into your knee joint. You will receive a series of five injections (one injection per week for a total of five weeks). The time it takes for patients to begin feeling relief varies. The extent of pain relief also varies from patient to patient. Good results can be sustained for 6-12 months.

Insurance coverage

Medicare covers the injections. The process of obtaining reimbursement varies from plan to plan. Speak with your doctor's office and your insurance provider before you begin treatment to find out if these injections are covered.

If you have any questions about regenerative medicine please call our office at (719) 434-1989 to request an appointment, or use our secure online appointment request form.