Injection Therapy: Intra-articular Platelet-Rich Plasma and Stem Cell Therapy

Injection Therapy: Intra-articular Platelet-Rich Plasma and Stem Cell Therapy

Abstract

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) has been touted in the sports medicine and orthopaedic surgery communities as a remedy with the ability to bridge the gap between conservative, pain relieving therapies and surgical interventions. Its theoretical advantages include its ability to enhance wound healing, decrease pain and improve function.

There has also been much excitement about the multipotential nature of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), with the potential to regenerate different types of musculoskeletal tissue from cartilage to meniscus.

Problems with both therapies abound. As yet, there is no common consensus as to what constitutes PRP, its preparation, or the method of its activation. Similarly, MSCs can have multiple origins, be induced in different methods and delivered in a variety of forms. Thus, at present, the evidence to substantiate the claims of either therapy is sparse or fails to be robust enough to support the arguments for its use.

Our chapter provides an evidence-based insight into the background, preparation and clinical use of both PRP and MSCs, two therapies which have much to offer in regenerating and preserving tissue within the adult knee.

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