“PRP injection resulted in better pain control, and the functional improvement was stable and maintained up to follow‐up. “

Lim, W., et al.

"Relationship of cytokine levels and clinical effect on platelet‐rich plasma‐treated lateral epicondylitis", Journal of Orthopaedic Research

Types of elbow pain

Types of elbow pain

Elbows are often subject to overuse as a result of overuse in sports or the result of repetitive work. The most common types of elbow pain include—

Tennis elbow. When the tendons of your forearm attach to the bony bump outside your elbow, it creates pain that can radiate from your elbow to the wrist. Despite its name, Tennis elbow affects millions of people whose work requires constant, repetitive flexing of the elbow joint. 

Golfer’s elbow. When the tendons of your forearm attach to the bony bump inside your elbow, it also creates pain that can shoot from your elbow to the wrist. And, like Tennis elbow, it affects many people who have never stepped foot on a golf course!

Arthritis. Osteoarthritis is when the protective cartilage that covers the ends of your bones breaks down over time, cause the ends of your bones to painfully rub against each other.

Sprains. The tough, fibrous tissues that connect the ends of bones together in your joints can become stretched and tear. This results in pain and discomfort while reducing your normal range of motion.

Bursitis. The inflammation of a fluid-filled sac that helps reduce friction inside your elbow. Bursitis is normally associated with pain and swelling.

Traditional approaches to treating elbow pain

Traditional treatment of elbow pain

Elbow pain is often treated according to the RICE principle: rest, ice, compression, and elevation. If this proves ineffective, patients are often prescribed medication, physical therapy, and, ultimately, referred for surgery.

Anti-inflammatory medications and cortisone shots

While medication and cortisone injections can provide fast relief from elbow pain, they may be doing more harm than good. A 2010 study by the University of Queensland found that repeated cortisone injections weaken elbow ligaments and tendons over time, increasing the risk of further injury. [1] The assumption underlying many of these treatments is that inflammation of the elbow joint is the main problem, instead of being a symptom of a bigger problem: damaged tissues.

Surgery

If the treatments above prove ineffective, patients are often referred for elbow surgery. But after a study from The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons confirmed that up to 95% of all tennis elbow cases can heal without surgery, many physicians have started exploring other treatments like PRP. [2] 

[1] Coombes, BK, et al. “Efficacy and safety of corticosteroid injections and other injections for management of tendinopathy: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials” The Lancet. 2010

[2] The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. “Tennis Elbow (Lateral Epicondylitis).” July 2015.

“The response to PRP seems to be favorable when compared to steroid injection for pain management and for patient-reported outcomes in lateral epicondylitis. PRP injection does not seem to have the potential complications associated with a steroid injection such as skin atrophy, discoloration, and secondary tendon tears.”

Kwapisz, A. et al.

"Platelet-Rich Plasma for Elbow Pathologies: a Descriptive Review of Current Literature", Current Reviews in Musculoskeletal Medicine. Sep. 2018.

“Fifteen patients were given a single injection of PRP and five were given a single injection of bupivacaine. The authors found that, at 8 weeks after treatment, the PRP group had significantly lower pain compared to the bupivacaine group. Further follow-up of the PRP group at a mean of 25.6 months showed that these patients had a 93% reduction in pain compared to prior to treatment.”

Cynthia A. Kahlenberg, Michael Knesek, and Michael A. Terry

"New Developments in the Use of Biologics and Other Modalities in the Management of Lateral Epicondylitis", BioMed Research International.

How PRP is different

How PRP is different

Professional athletes have known about PRP therapy for years. Instead of only treating the inflammation, we focus on repairing your knee’s underlying tissue damage. We take platelets from a sample of your blood, concentrate them into a super-potent serum, and then inject them back into damaged ligaments, tendons, and joints to stimulate the body’s own healing process. When injected, PRP acts as a stem cell magnet, releasing growth factors that attract stem cells to aid in tissue repair and regeneration in the damaged area. A meta-analysis published in 2017 found PRP to be effective in managing osteoarthritic pain. [3]

For 20 years, PRP therapy has been proven safe and effective by the FDA. Countless professional athletes have used PRP to quickly resolve elbow pain with little to no downtime. Doctors are recognizing PRP for its ability to heal soft tissue damage at the cellular level and avoid the risks posed by elbow surgery.

[3] Shen, L., Yuan, T., Chen, S., Xie, X., and Zhang, C. “The temporal effect of platelet-rich plasma on pain and physical function in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.” Journal of Orthopaedic Surgery and Research. January 2017.

“I went for a consultation and Dr. Jethani explained everything to me. Since having my PRP shot one month ago, I haven’t had to take a single pain pill. If you don’t have to have surgery, and you can get off of pain pills with PRP, you’d be crazy not to. I have been telling everybody about this.”

Elizabeth S.

Patient

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