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What is a Regenerative Medicine?

Updated: Nov 26, 2019

What is a Regenerative Medicine?

Regenerative Medicine procedures stimulate a healing and tissue growth response inside damaged tissue using several techniques. In this article, we'll talk about prolotherapy and PRP (platelet rich plasma).


Prolotherapy uses a concentrated dextrose (sugar-based) or saline (salt based) solution that is injected into the area of degeneration such as joint arthritis, tendon/ligament/muscle tearing, or spinal disc.  The solution acts as an irritant which promotes healing by stimulating the body to provide additional blood supply to the injured area.  This additional blood flow brings the nutrients and repair cells that lead to regeneration and healing of the injured tissue.  Of the regenerative treatment options, prolotherapy is the weakest.  The average treatments are 3-5 and treatments are space 6 weeks apart.  For this reason, most patients do not choose this treatment option.

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP):

PRP stimulates a more intense healing response than prolotherapy because instead of injecting a concentrated dextrose solution, we draw your own blood, isolate the portion that is responsible for stimulating growth and healing (the platelet rich plasma portion), then re-inject the growth solution into the area of degeneration. 

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) consists of concentrated platelets and growth factors that promote healing and regeneration of injured tissues. PRP is derived from your own body and is 100% natural. PRP injections are an increasingly popular alternative to surgery and addictive medications. Although still investigational, these therapies have proven to be effective for patients of all ages.

To harvest PRP, a small sample of blood is drawn into a specialized collection system and then centrifuged at high speeds to isolate the growth factors and platelets. Because the blood drawn is used for a therapy treatment on the same patient, there is no risk of a transmissible infection or allergic reaction. These therapies are a safe, nonsurgical treatment option for most chronic pain conditions, wound care, and aesthetic abnormalities.The healing cells cause regeneration/healing of chronic injuries, sports injuries, or other natural degenerative processes.  Average treatments for PRP are only 1-2 making them much for time and cost effective for patients than prolotherapy.  The difference between Prolotherapy and PRP is that Prolotherapy stimulates the body’s healing cells to target the area of degeneration, whereas PRP takes your healing cells, concentrates them, and then directly injects them to the areas of degeneration.  PRP is a much stronger stimulus for healing, and therefore will require fewer treatments to achieve the same end result much faster.  If repeat injections are needed, treatments are generally spaced at least 6-8 weeks apart, allowing for proper healing cascade to take effect. Some personal factors that may inhibit maximum healing include age over 80, smoking, poor nutrition, diabetes and other immune suppressing conditions.

If you're in pain, please call us today! We're here to help, and our double board certified pain medicine physician Dr. Stephen Wilson will create a plan to get you back to a pain-free life!

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