Our joints begin to wear out as we age. If you’re suffering from joint pain and stiffness, you know how debilitating it can be. Whether it’s from natural wear and tear, degenerative diseases, or injuries, joint pain can keep you from going about your daily activities with ease. The treatment for joint pain isn’t just medicine or surgery — PRP might be the key to get you moving again.
So, how exactly does PRP help alleviate joint pain? What does synovial fluid have to do with it? Let’s look at how PRP increases synovial fluid and why it’s a boon for aching joints.
What Is PRP?
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is simple: your blood platelets contain growth factors. These factors initiate tissue formation. When growth factors are concentrated, they promote healing, reduce inflammation, repair damaged tissue, and eliminate pain.
PRP injections are usually administered in patients with joint pain from osteoarthritis. To obtain PRP, a small sample of a patient’s blood will be drawn and processed in a centrifuge. This will separate the plasma from the red blood cells to create a dense concentration of platelets and white blood cells. Then, it’ll be injected directly into the affected joint to stimulate healing.
PRP therapy is also used in cosmetic procedures (e.g., hair loss, wrinkles treatment) and wound healing after surgery or trauma for its regenerative properties.
What Is Synovial Fluid?
Synovial fluid is a thick liquid that lubricates your joints to allow for smooth, painless movement. It also keeps joints from rubbing against each other. As you grow older, you will have less synovial fluid, which can cause aches and pains in the joints.
Because of less synovial fluid, you can become susceptible to joint disorders as you get older. Joint deterioration — such as the wearing away of cartilage and less fluid production — can cause osteoarthritis, the leading cause of chronic joint pain. Patients with osteoarthritis often struggle with joint pain, inflammation, stiffness, deformity, and decreased motion.
How Does PRP Increase Synovial Fluid?
Your blood is the main ingredient in PRP injections. With the help of concentrated platelets in your blood, it boosts the body’s natural healing properties. The effects of PRP include regeneration, repair, and replacement of damaged tissue.
Since it helps the body repair itself, PRP therapy also stimulates the production of synovial fluid. That, in turn, alleviates joint pain and decreased mobility that occur when joints grind against one another. Aside from lubrication, synovial fluid also protects cartilage. In this way, PRP boosts healthy joint preservation biological processes.
In addition to increasing synovial fluid, the other effects of PRP include:
- Reduced pain and swelling
- Improved joint function
- Increased mobility
- Enhanced cartilage quality
Why Should You Get PRP?
PRP is a powerful, completely natural way to reduce chronic joint pain and heal your body. Aside from its positive effects, here are other benefits of getting PRP:
- PRP is proven to be completely safe without side effects. Because it uses your own blood, there’s no risk of rejection or infection.
- You’ll see the results of PRP quickly. Patients usually see improvements within a week. Its effects last longer than other joint pain treatments, and there’s no downtime needed to recover — you can resume physical activities the next day.
- PRP isn’t usually covered by insurance, but the out-of-pocket costs are far lower than surgical procedures or long-term pharmaceutical treatments. You’ll only need one or two injections, and the treatment only takes an hour to complete, reducing your expenses.
- Minimal contraindications. Nearly everyone is eligible for PRP treatment. Perhaps the only limiting factor is the patient’s health, as a good source of platelets is needed.
PRP Treatment In Austin, TX
Synovial fluid helps your joints move easily. Joint damage that occurs due to aging can cause less production of synovial fluid, which leads to painful and stiff joints. PRP can help stimulate your body’s natural healing, thus promoting the production of synovial fluid.
If you’re looking for a safe and effective treatment for your joint pain, the All Star Orthopedics of Austin offers PRP therapy. Our skilled, board-certified providers, led by Dr. Caroline Hyde, offer only the highest quality service and results for treating a wide range of musculoskeletal issues and conditions. We’re committed to providing safe, efficient, and compassionate healthcare to our patients.
Don’t let aging joints stop you from living your best life, even in your golden years. If you’d like to know more about PRP, book an appointment with one of our physicians by calling us at (512) 346-4933, or use our online appointment request form. We look forward to partnering with you on your journey to improved health!