by Dr. Brant McCartan
Platelet Rich Plasma therapy, or PRP injections can significantly reduce the recovery time for people suffering from tendon injuries like plantar fasciitis. PRP is a serum of platelet cells taken from your own blood that is injected at the site of the injury. The platelets contain growth factors that can help in the healing of many injuries, by “jump-starting” your own healing process. This treatment has been in use for many years, and is recently gaining popularity in the United States. With any treatment, there is the potential for side effects. PRP therapy is overall very benign. Possible side effects of PRP therapy include:
- Soreness or pain at the site of the injection
- Infection, though every precaution is taken for a sterile procedure.
- Allergic reaction – it is very rare, but possible for someone to have an allergic reaction to their own serum.
- Bruising or other skin discoloration
- A blood clot can occur when a blood vessel is damaged. With PRP, a clot can occur if a vein or artery is damaged during the injection process.
All of the above side effects are very, very rare! I have personally done a ton of PRP therapy treatments, and witnessed no bad reactions. The most common side effect that I see is that it unfortunately does not always work. Like many other medical treatments, not everyone responds to it. For many patients, it can be very effective and a great alternative to surgery.