In the US, it is estimated that around 20% of the adult population deals with chronic pain. Countless more are experiencing the negative effects of aging, whether they are medical or esthetic symptoms. Although many of these conditions can be debilitating, new advances in regenerative medicine can provide relief. Here at Revive MD Center in Glen Allen, VA, we offer one of the most successful treatments, called PRP therapy in Richmond.
PRP therapy in Richmond is a non-invasive and effective way of harnessing your body’s healing power to treat a very wide variety of conditions and concerns. With this substance, we can remove many different causes of pain as well as the effects of aging. Today, let’s explore what kinds of problems can be treated and who might be a great candidate for this type of therapy.
What Can PRP Therapy Treat?
PRP stands for platelet-rich plasma, and it is a substance created from certain components found in your own blood. When injected into areas affected by your condition, it will speed up healing and regenerate the local cells. Because the power of platelets is universal, this method can be used in a great number of tissues and areas of the body, whether your concerns are esthetic or medical.
For example, PRP can help to eliminate the effects of tendon, ligament, and muscle injuries as well as arthritis, allowing you to reduce or even eliminate the amount of chronic pain you have to live with. The therapy is also an effective treatment against the effects of aging, which include wrinkling and a loss of volume in the face. Because PRP helps your body to rebuild healthy cells, it doesn’t just treat the symptoms but addresses the cause of your issues.
Platelet-rich plasma treatment is a part of regenerative medicine, which aims to stop and reverse the damage done by medical conditions and aging so that you can regain maximum quality of life. The premise is that your own body is capable of healing itself, and by delivering the healthy components of your blood directly to the affected areas, PRP facilitates this process.
To produce the substance that will be injected into the tissues, blood is drawn and spun in a centrifuge for around 10 minutes. That way, proteins called platelets, and plasma, the liquid part of your blood, are separated from the red blood cells. They are then injected into the area of the body where they are most needed, no matter whether this is your face, knee, back, or another area.
What Are Platelets?
Platelets are small proteins in your blood, and their main function is to assist with blood clotting and the healing process after an injury. When your body is injured, platelets are sent to the area through the blood, where they coagulate and cover your wound with a scab. Next, they send out some chemical signals that attract other types of healing agents to the area, which will then dispose of broken cells and stimulate the growth of new, healthy ones.
It is this secondary function that we are most interested in harnessing when using PRP. Once the substance has been injected, the platelets will act as they would at the site of an injury, stimulating the creation of healthy tissue. Over several weeks, your symptoms will decrease as the PRP works to enhance and restore the cells in the local area.
After the age of 20, we produce 1% less of the protein collagen every year. This is what helps our skin to remain elastic and our face to bounce back after contorting it into facial expressions. The less we have, the more prone we are to wrinkling and sagging skin. PRP is an effective way of reversing such signs of aging and a much less invasive method when compared to the surgical intervention that was required in the past.
Because of its versatility, PRP can be applied to many different areas, including the face, neck, and hands. No matter what area of your body you feel self-conscious about, this type of therapy can help you to regain that youthful glow and natural firmness you’ve been missing.
One of the most popular options are facials, which can help to reduce the fine wrinkles and lines the majority of us start to experience with age. In many cases, we will advise a two-step process when it comes to using PRP on the face. First, we will use microneedling, which is a process where your skin is pricked with tiny needles to promote the formation of more collagen.
This alone can help your skin to become firmer and smoother, but when used in combination with a PRP injection, the results will be magnified and healing will be sped up. Unlike some creams and ointments, this is not just a surface-level solution, but the deeper tissue will be transformed as well. That’s why so many people swear by the PRP facial as a natural and pain-free rejuvenation therapy.
Another common problem associated with aging is the loss of volume in your face. This can occur in several areas, such as the cheeks and the eyes, and can effectively be treated with a combination of dermal fillers and PRP therapy.
While your doctor will inject the two substances separately, they will work together to produce that plump and youthful look. In addition, PRP can address common issues such as unevenly textured skin, so you can get a double benefit from your treatment.
The loss of hair can be a traumatic experience for many people, particularly women or younger men. Years ago, the only option was a hair transplant, which was expensive and painful in most cases. This problem can be solved with PRP, as the substance will stimulate the growth of hair follicles.
In some cases, PRP will be used on its own, but we will often combine it with other methods, such as exosomes and stem cells, to create a potent hair restoration therapy. After treatment, your hair follicles will start to grow again naturally, and you can enjoy the increase in good looks and confidence that comes with this.
Maybe the most exciting application of PRP therapy is in the treatment of conditions that cause chronic pain, such as traumatic injuries or arthritis. While our body is its own best doctor, it sometimes needs some help to get started, and that’s where platelet-rich plasma comes in. By injecting it to the site of your pain, it can stimulate the healing process, no matter how long you have suffered from your chronic condition.
You may have heard of professional athletes using PRP after injury. Some particularly famous examples are Hines Ward, Chris Cooley, and Andre Johnson. This method helped them to recover and return to the playing field faster than they otherwise could have. Luckily, the treatment is now also open to the general public, and you can benefit from this rapid healing technique if you suffer from any of the following issues.
Your tendons are the tissues that connect your muscles to your bones. They receive a lot less blood flow than muscles, which is why it’s so hard for them to heal once they’ve been injured. Sometimes, they are torn through a traumatic injury, but in most cases, they are simply inflamed, in which case the condition is called tendinitis, or tendinosis once it gets chronic.
Many athletes and people who participate in sports activities experience this issue in the Achilles tendon, the rotator cuff, or the knee. In clinical studies, the success rate of treating tendon injuries with PRP has been over 90%, which is why this type of therapy is now generally accepted.
Ligament and Muscle Injuries
Other types of tissues that often get injured are ligaments, the connective tissue that joins your bones to other bones, and the muscles themselves. In many cases, they are simply worn out due to overuse, especially as we age, but injuries can also take place as a result of sports or daily activities.
Many people opt for an operation when this happens, but PRP therapy is an alternative that is growing in popularity. Not only can the pain go away, but your tissue will be strengthened by up to 40%, allowing you to return to your favorite activities stronger than ever. Unlike more topical treatments, PRP heals the body from the inside out, so it is a permanent solution.
Osteoarthritis is a debilitating, yet common issue, affecting over 10% of the population. It is especially common in people over 45, although it can occur at any age due to either genetic factors or excessive athletic activity. Unfortunately, it is degenerative, which means that it gets worse over time, as the cartilage in your joints is diminished more and more.
Most commonly, people with osteoarthritis will suffer from pain in their knees, hips, wrists, and thumbs. By using PRP, the shock-absorbing tissue can be re-built and you can enjoy being active again, without the accompanying pain.
Who Can Get PRP?
Now that you know some of the conditions that can be treated with this type of therapy, you may be wondering whether you’re a good candidate. Because the treatment is noninvasive and uses your own cells, the risk is very low and most people will be eligible. Unless you have a circulatory condition that affects the relevant components of your blood, a metastatic disease, or an active infection, you are likely to be accepted for treatment.
If you are currently pregnant, you may have to wait until some months after you have given birth. While PRP is unlikely to damage you or your baby, it is better to be on the safe side and start the therapy when your child is past breastfeeding age.
What To Expect
PRP treatment is very quick and easy compared to a surgical intervention, so you won’t have to go through a lengthy preparation and recovery time. When you contact us, we will go through your medical history and determine a course of action. You may need recurring injections every 6 months for a while if your condition is chronic or severe.
On the day of your appointment, you will spend around 30-60 minutes in the clinic, depending on the exact type of therapy. To make the experience pain-free, we will apply a local anesthetic to the area, which will take effect while the PRP is produced in the centrifuge. Once we are sure the area is numb, we can start the injections, and they should take around 10-15 minutes. You can leave the clinic and get back to your normal activities as soon as you’re done.
Rid Yourself of Pain or the Effects of Aging Today
Millions of Americans suffer from chronic pain and the negative effects of aging every day. With PRP therapy, many of these issues can be eliminated, so that you can regain the quality of life you deserve. Contact ReviveMD Center in Glen Allen, VA, today to book your initial appointment with our expert providers.