If you know me, you know that I have been a pianist since I could reach the ivory keys. When I learned to type, as a result of my finger dexterity from playing piano, I reached 150 words per minute in a less than a year. Now, I type as fast as I can think, which is helpful as a writer of 12 books. But, now, playing piano, typing, even cooking, chopping, and every day chores are excruciatingly painful as arthritis inherited from both parents has kicked in. My mother’s fingers are so bent inward, she can barely write with a pen. I look at her and think, I cannot… I will not end up like her! So, I’ve talked to my physician, Dr. Neel Amin, about a treatment that can help, PRP. This week I’m going to get it. I’ll tell you how I feel after I receive the treatment. Below is an explanation of the treatment.

What is PRP (Platlete Rich Plasma)? PRP can be another catalyst to help your body recover and begin making its own healing cells more quickly and expediently. After researching it, I believe my arthritic body and, most especially, my wrists and fingers (smaller joints) can be helped. Dr. Neel Amin, MD’s FloridaStemCellMD clinic in Fort Lauderdale will continue with a PRP treatment for my aching, arthritic wrists and fingers.

Platelet rich plasma therapy or PRP is more than a passing fad. In fact, a platelet rich plasma injection can lead to significant pain reduction and healing. Platelet rich plasma injections are nearly painless in the hands of my trusted physician, Dr. Amin. Plasma rich platelet therapy, in conjunction with stem cell therapy, is part of a rising practice called regenerative therapies. Platelet rich plasma treatment not only relieves pain, it can lead to complete healing.

Thanks to a number of celebrities, platelet rich plasma therapy has amassed quite a following. But Keeping up with the Kardashians is far from the best reason to learn more about platelet rich plasma treatment. Platelet rich plasma is a very real and beneficial alternative to surgery, backed by science, that’s healing patients of all ages around the world.

Even though the number of famous and influential athletes who swear by plasma rich platelet therapy continues to rise, you don’t have to be rich to benefit from these ground-breaking treatments. These treatments have a definite advantage over surgical options because there is no associated downtime for recovery.

One Step Further than Pain Management
Platelet rich plasma injections are a concentration of platelet-rich protein that’s derived from your own blood. Plasma is the liquid part of your blood. And your platelets make it possible for your blood to clot. Your platelets contain hundreds of proteins called growth factors. Your growth factors promote healing. They have been proven to be a safe and effective method of treating damaged joints and soft tissue—naturally.

Platelet rich plasma injections are increasingly being used as a non-surgical alternative for orthopedic conditions, injuries, and chronic pain management, including:

Osteoarthritis,
Chronic lower back pain,
Injuries to ligaments and muscles,
Acute, chronic tendon issues,
Spinal stenosis,
Tennis elbow,
Medical collateral ligament (MCL) tears,
Chronic, acute neck pain,
Rotator cuff tears, and
Plantar fasciitis.

These conditions typically are treated with medications, physical therapy, or surgery. Many top athletes have credited platelet rich plasma injections for their faster healing times, following injuries that could have previously cost them the season or their careers.

What All the Hype’s About?
When there is an increased concentration of growth factors, your body’s natural healing process can be turbo-charged. There are a couple of ways that platelet rich plasma treatment is being used for pain and injury:

Platelet rich plasma can be injected directly where it hurts. If you are suffering from tendonitis, for example, Dr. Amin may inject you with a mixture of a local anesthetic and platelet rich plasma. Your pain may persist for a couple of weeks until your natural healing process has the time to prove beneficial.
Platelet rich plasma therapy can also be used to speed up healing following a surgical procedure. If you suffered a complete tear to your rotator cuff and surgery was required, a platelet rich plasma injection can significantly improve the speed and quality of your recovery.
The most popular method of using plasma rich platelet therapy is in conjunction with stem cell therapy. Platelets and stem cells help induce inflammation and induce your own body’s repair system. But age and injury make it difficult for your body to deliver these healing components to where they’re most needed as you get older. This school of treatment is known as regenerative therapy because it helps your body heal itself the way it was designed to.

Nothing New
Platelet rich plasma has been used in the medical field for more than twenty years. Surgeons have used it to accelerate healing, enhance bone grafting, and reduce the risk of infection following surgery. Now the benefits are being extended to treat joint pain, disc issues, soft tissue injuries, degeneration and arthritis.

Since platelet rich plasma is derived from your own blood, any associated risks are non-existent. Tenderness at the injection sites seems to be the worst side effect, and it only lasts for a couple of days.

What to Expect
Once Dr. Neel Amin, M.D. identifies the exact nature of your pain or injury, he draws some blood. Then, your blood is spun in a centrifuge to separate the different components. Once complete, the platelets rich plasma is extracted from the inflammatory processes. Your platelets are then injected directly into your problem area, so that they can begin to enhance and promote your body’s natural healing.

The entire procedure is done on an outpatient basis in the safety and comfort of your specialist’s office. The process takes about an hour, which accounts for preparation and recovery. The process relieves pain without the risks of surgery, general anesthesia, hospital stays, or prolonged downtime.

Natural Healing Doesn’t Happen Overnight
Regenerative medicine is innovative, not instantaneous. It promotes natural, long-term healing of injured tissue and joints. Your specialist customizes a treatment plan for you and helps you decide whether you will benefit more if platelet rich plasma injections are used alone or combined with stem cell injections.

You may only require a single treatment, but in some cases, a series of injections may be necessary. You’ll need a follow-up appointment after a couple of weeks, so that your doctor can assess your progress and determine if you need further treatment.

Lots of Good Candidates
Age, condition and activity level are not limiting factors to platelet rich plasma therapy. You must be as up-front and honest as possible with your doctor. You’re not a good candidate if:

You’re pregnant,
You’re anemic,
You have a blood disorder or are on anticoagulants, and
You have a medical condition, such as an active infection, that may be spread by injection.

While these treatments have helped thousands of people over the years, they are still not covered by most insurance plans. However, the procedure is relatively simple and therefore affordable. Ask your doctor and insurance carrier about platelet rich plasma therapy.

Start Asking Questions
Platelet rich plasma treatments have proven so naturally effective at treating pain and injury that they were removed from the World Anti-Doping Agency’s list of banned methods in 2011. PRP became a legal treatment for athletes around the world.

Responses to treatments can vary, depending on the type and severity of your injury and condition. Dr. Neel Amin, M.D. your Apex Pain Specialist is ready to answer any questions you may have. Lasting relief from your pain could only be about an hour away.