PRP Therapy and Stem Cell Therapy for Arthritis and other conditions

Stem Cell therapy and PRP (platelet rich plasma) therapy are promising treatments for degenerative arthritis, bursitis, tennis elbow, patella tendinitis, plantar fasciitis, rotator cuff tears, muscle injuries, shin splints or a variety of other musculoskeletal conditions. Orthopedists are always looking for new and innovative ways to treat their patients.  Stem Cell and PRP therapy both provide a minimally invasive method of promoting healing without surgery or in addition to a surgical procedure.

What are Stem Cells

stem cellStem cells are the cells of the body that are undifferentiated, meaning they can turn into other cell types.  Stem cells can be obtained from the umbilical cord, bone marrow, or adipose (fat) tissue.  The stem cells obtained from the embryonic environment are preferred to other types of stem cells, first because the potential of stem cells is thought to decrease with age and second, because it can be painful to extract bone marrow. With embryonic stem cells, at the time of Cesarean delivery, the baby is delivered healthy and the umbilical cord/Wharton’s jelly (which in the past were typically discarded) are collected, with maternal consent. The donors are between 18 and 35 years old, are healthy, and have no prior use of medication or other chemical substances. Maternal history is analyzed and blood tested.

What is Platelet Rich Plasma

​​​​​​​Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is plasma with many more platelets than is typically found in blood. Platelets contain hundreds of proteins called growth factors which are very important in the healing process and can therefore stimulate that natural process in orthopedic injuries.  With PRP therapy, the patient’s own blood is drawn, the platelets are concentrated using centrifuge, and then the PRP is injected back into the injured area.

What to expect with Stem Cell therapy or PRP therapy

For both Stem Cell therapy and PRP therapy, the procedure is similar to receiving a cortisone injections, and the healing process begins immediately after the injection is given.  The patient should start to experience a reduction of pain in 2-6 weeks. For some people, improvement may still be limited after three months.  In these cases a follow-up injection may be needed.  Many patients will still experience relief up to two years after treatment.

Does Insurance cover PRP therapy or Stem Cell therapy for arthritis or other ailments

Both Stem Cell therapy and PRP therapy are considered experimental, and are not yet approved by the FDA.  Therefore, they are not covered by insurance. The cost will vary depending on the volume and type of injection to be given. It is of utmost importance to only be treated by an orthopedic surgeon, as many fraudulent clinics are popping up promoting stem cell therapy. Consult with one of our doctors at Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group to schedule a consultation with one of our stem cell experts to find out how this treatment can benefit you – 719-632-7669.

Call (719) 632-7669