Platelet rich plasma injections (PRP injections)
The field of sports medicine is advancing at a rapid pace and is encouraging millions of people from athletes to the general population to participate in regular activity to stay healthy and active (1). However this increase in physical activity has also seen an increase in musculoskeletal injuries. The World Health Organisation has recently recognised that musculoskeletal injuries affect hundreds of millions of people worldwide and are the most common cause of severe long term pain and physical disability (2). In Australia alone, there are almost 4 cases of medically treated sporting injuries per 100 persons (3).
Soft tissue injuries which include ligament and tendons represent up to 45% of all musculoskeletal injuries (4,5). The increasing participation in sporting activities coupled together with improved modern imaging techniques such as MRI and high resolution ultrasound have helped sports medicine practitioners to better understand these injuries (6).
1. Sánchez M, Anitua E, Orive G, Mujika I, Andia I. Platelet-rich therapies in the treatment of orthopaedic sport injuries. Sports Med. 2009;39(5):345-54.
2. Woolf AD, Pfleyer B. Burdon of major musculoskeletal conditions. Bull World Health Organ. 2003;81:646–56.
3. Cassel EP, Finch CF, Stathakis VZ. Epidemiology of medically treated sport and active recreation injuries in the Latrobe Valley, Victoria, Australia. Br J Sports Med 20032; 37: 405-9.
4. Anitua M, Sánchez E, Nurden A, Nurden P, Orive G, And ́ıa I. New insights into and novel applications for platelet-rich fibrin therapies. Trends Biotechnol. 2006;24(5):227–34.
5. Praemer AF. Musculoskeletal conditions in the United States. 2nd ed. Rosemont: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons; 1999.
6. Sampson S, Gerhardt M, Mandelbaum B. Platelet rich plasma injection grafts for musculoskeletal injuries: a review. Curr Rev Musculoskelet Med. 2008 Dec;1(3-4):165-74.