In the field of orthopedics, platelet rich plasma (PRP) therapy is used to help accelerate the natural healing process in injured joints and tissues. PRP therapy capitalizes on the body’s instinctive ability to recover from injuries by sending special proteins called growth factors to an injury site to stimulate healthy tissue growth. If you’re set to receive PRP therapy, you may be wondering how you can maximize your treatment and get the very best results from PRP.
First and foremost, you should carefully follow all recovery instructions and medical advice provided by your physician. No two patients are exactly alike, and what can benefit someone else may not be ideal for you. Generally speaking, though, many patients who are receiving PRP therapy are encouraged to follow the following guidelines:
Before PRP Therapy
- Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated to promote the circulation of red blood cells and maintain hemoglobin levels.
- Eat a full, nutrient-rich breakfast the morning of your procedure.
- Do not take anti-inflammatory drugs three to four days before your procedure.
- Discontinue blood-thinning medications and systemic steroids one to two weeks before your procedure.
- Avoid steroid injections at least one month before your procedure.
After PRP Therapy
- Do not take any medications following your procedure without your physician’s consent. Some medications, including anti-inflammatory drugs and systemic steroids, may need to be avoided for a few weeks after treatment.
- Avoid placing heat or ice on the injection site for at least three days after treatment.
- Do not shower or bathe for 24 hours after treatment.
- Do not smoke or drink alcohol for at least one week after treatment. (Consider quitting smoking for best results.)
- Limit your caffeine intake for the first week following treatment.
How Does PRP Therapy Work?
Many patients also find it helpful to gain a better understanding of how PRP therapy restores damaged tissues. In short, PRP is a minimally invasive, outpatient treatment that delivers a boost of growth factors directly to an injured area to help accelerate healing. Here’s a brief overview of what PRP therapy entails:
- A small blood sample is taken from the patient.
- The blood sample is processed in a machine called a centrifuge to separate growth factor-rich platelets from other blood cells.
- The growth factor-rich platelets are concentrated and injected directly into the injured joint or tissue, sometimes along with an anesthetic.
Your physician will carefully walk you through the PRP therapy process and answer any questions you may have about treatment.
PRP Therapy at Tampa Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine Group
Tampa Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine Group—a division of Florida Medical Clinic and the longest operating orthopedic practice in Tampa—provides PRP therapy, stem cell injections, viscosupplementation, arthroscopic procedures, and other progressive musculoskeletal treatments to patients. To schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified specialists, contact our office today or request an appointment online at your convenience. We look forward to helping you achieve your very best orthopedic health.