Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP)
When a tendon or ligament is torn, pulled or otherwise injured, ample blood flow to the area is needed to supply platelets and healing factors that encourage the development of new collagen fibers and restore strength and flexibility to the injured tissues. Insufficient blood flow or other shortfalls in the healing process can lead to malformation of collagen fibers and an overabundance of scar tissue that interferes with the healthy re-growth of tendons and ligaments. Scar tissue can prohibit blood flow, preventing the injured areas from healing properly.
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy is a revolutionary treatment that uses a person’s own plasma (blood) to assist the healing and regeneration of tendons, ligaments and other soft tissues. The therapy starts by simply drawing a patient’s blood and centrifuging it so that its platelets and growth factors can be used in their concentrated form, PRP, which acts as a potent tissue growth stimulant and speeds up the body’s natural healing process.
The attending physician guides a needle to the exact spot so that PRP can be injected directly into injured tissues. Because PRP is nothing but the patient’s own condensed blood with no additives, there is no risk of rejection or allergic response.
Although relatively new in the US, PRP has been widely and successfully used throughout Europe for years, and can be an effective solution for people suffering from chronic tendonitis, tendinosis, tendinopathy or an unhealed torn tendon. It is also effective for those with a recent injury who want to accelerate the healing process, making PRP attractive to athletes and others who may not have 8-12 weeks to spare before their injury heals on its own. This minimally-invasive procedure is performed right in the physician’s office, making it quick and cost-effective.
PRP therapy can be used to treat the following diseases/disorders:
- Tendonitis/tearing of the knee, shoulder, hand or wrist
- Medial epicondylitis (golfer’s elbow) and lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow)
- Quadriceps, hamstring and other muscle pulls
- Plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis of the foot
- A host of other conditions whose healing is slow or halted because of scarring or lack of blood flow
Stem Cell Injections
The use of amniotic fluid and stem cells in medicine is much older and more widespread than people might think. It has been used to diagnose prenatal conditions for more than 70 years, and to treat injury, pain and scarring for nearly a century. What makes this therapy so exciting is the wealth of research and real-life application that supports its usefulness in not only relieving pain and assisting healing, but also in regenerating damaged soft tissues, including ligaments, tendons and cartilage. What this means to patients is the genuine possibility of healing injured tissues, making amniotic fluid/stem cell injection a revolutionary approach to managing, and even healing, ligament damage, tendonitis and osteoarthritis.
FMI utilizes NuCel bioactive amniotic suspension (HCT/P) to treat and repair soft tissue and to assist in certain types of orthopaedic surgery. NuCel’s more than 17,000 applications have proven it safe and effective at reducing pain, inflammation and scarring, and assisting in healing.
NuCel is derived from amniotic membranes from consenting donors, not from fetal tissue. NuCel contains concentrated multipotential stem cells, which are cells with the ability to make more of themselves, and growth factors, which are the naturally-occurring agents that can stimulate cell migration to injury sites to actively repair tissues. These agents are combined with all-natural hyaluronic acid and proteins to assist in delivery and support healing and healthy cell regeneration. NuCel is fully regulated by the FDA and has been used in thousands of patients without a single reported rejection, allergic response or other adverse reaction.
NuCel is not presently covered by insurance, which may cause some patients to be concerned about cost. But because NuCel has the potential to actually heal injuries and pain conditions, it can delay and even prevent the need for surgery, making it a preferred option for some patients.
FMI’s Dr. Carl Ollivierre is not only a provider of NuCel, but also a patient who has successfully used it to treat his own posterior tibial tendinitis. Dr. Ollivierre provides NuCel injections at both FMI locations.