Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy is an innovative therapy that can promote healing of bones, cartilage, blood vessels and tissue. PRP is a growth factor found in blood platelets, and the procedure involves drawing a small amount of blood, spinning it in a centrifuge to separate out the PRP, and then injecting it directly into the site of the injury to stimulate healing. The procedure takes around 45 minutes, and can assist with:
- Chronic Achilles tendon pain
- Chronic pain
- Acute ligament injuries
After the procedure, a patient will wear a protective boot for up to five days, and can then gradually increase activities. Improvements are typically noticed between 4 – 6 weeks, and additional injections can be given if needed.
Stem Cell Therapy
Stem Cell Therapy is an innovative approach to treating osteoarthritis in which stem cells are used to regrow tissue. In an arthritic joint, the stem cells are used to regenerate the cartilage. They also possess anti-inflammatory effects, resulting in a joint that hurts less and moves better. Stem cell therapy may prevent the need for joint replacement in some patients.
There are both surgical and non-surgical approaches to stem cell therapy depending on the condition and its severity. Stem cells come from a variety of sources in a live person, and may come from either you or a donor. The most commonly used sources include bone marrow, fat, placenta and umbilical cord.
Corticosteroids injected (steroid shot) right into the joint can also be used to help with swelling and pain.
These injections can be performed at your health care provider’s office or with the guidance of ultrasound or x-rays.
When the pain subsides after these injections, it may be tempting to go back to activities that may have caused your pain. It is important to ask your doctor if you are able to remsume activities, or to give you exercises and stretches that will decrease the chance of your pain returning.
The body naturally makes both glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate. They are important for healthy cartilage in your joints. They both can also be bought over the counter as supplements.
- Glucosamine comes as glucosamine sulfate, glucosamine hydrochloride, and n-acetyl glucosamine. These products may come in tablet, capsule, and powder forms.
- Chondroitin sulfate comes in capsules or tablets. It is often combined with glucosamine.
These supplements may help control pain. However, they do not seem to help your joint grow new cartilage or keep your arthritis from getting worse. Some doctors recommend a trial period of 3 months to see whether glucosamine and chondroitin help.
Orthotics are custom medical devices prescribed by your foot and ankle surgeon. They are made using a mold of your foot to meet your specific needs, and help support and align the foot and lower extremities.