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Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy after Meniscus Surgery

ProlotherapyRoss Hauser, MD

In this article Ross Hauser, MD explores research which suggests that following a meniscal surgery, PRP injections can be of great benefit.

If Platelet Rich Plasma Prolotherapy (PRP) can enhance the healing of meniscus following meniscal surgery, why have the surgery? Here is recent  research on the use of PRP Therapy and treatment for meniscus tears.

Doctors say that the white-white tears (meniscus lesion completely in the avascular zone) are without blood supply and should not be able to heal…but something needs to be done – doctors without question confirm that the meniscus are important in load bearing, load redistribution, shock absorption, joint lubrication and the stabilization of the knee joint.

  • It has been proven that partial or all-meniscectomy results in an accelerated degeneration of cartilage and an increased rate of early osteoarthritis.

In doctors talking to doctors, surgeons warn each other that they face the difficult decision of removing or, if possible, retaining the meniscus; if it is possible to retain the meniscus, surgeons must address the difficulties of meniscal healing. Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) can be the answer for many and that platelet-rich plasma for white-white meniscal tears will be a simple and high utility in knee surgery.1

Meniscal Surgery: Poor Option for Damaged Cartilage

There is no question that cartilage heals slowly and poorly. This difficulty in healing is why the surgical option for meniscal injury is seemingly the only answer to those unfamiliar with the repairing techniques of Prolotherapy, stem cell injection therapy, and Platelet Rich Plasma therapy.

Recommendations for surgeries involving shaving or removing the torn portion of the tear using arthroscopic surgery, or sewing the tear together is flawed because it does not repair the deteriorated cartilage. By failing to heal the damaged meniscal cartilage, surgery does not alleviate the chronic pain that people with this condition experience. In fact, with this approach the demise of the cartilage is inevitable because the meniscus provides nutrition to the articular cartilage. If the cartilage is damaged, pressure on the bone will be too great and arthritis will develop. Although the individual may feel better for a while after surgery, the fact is that the injured tissue remains injured. If the torn meniscus is completely removed, too much pressure is put on the articular cartilage and shock absorption is dramatically affected.

In the above study, researchers sought to improve the surgical outcomes in meniscal surgery by applying a PRP solution to the torn meniscus that is “white”. In other words there is no blood flow to bring the cells necessary for repair to enhance surgical outcome. The question of course is why have the surgery if there is confidence the PRP treatment will repair the meniscus non-surgically?

Platelet Rich Plasma Prolotherapy for Meniscal Tears

We have been asking that question for years as we have found Prolotherapy to be an effective surgery alternative for meniscal injury. Our published research in the Journal of Prolotherapy stated:

Prolotherapy treatments showed a statistically significant decline in the patients’ knee pain and stiffness. Prolotherapy showed large improvements in other clinically relevant areas such as range of motion, crepitation, exercise, and walking ability. Patients stated that the response to Prolotherapy met their expectations in 27 out of the 28 knees (96%)

Only one out of the 28 patients ended up getting surgery after Prolotherapy. “2

Do you need more information of PRP and Stem Cell Therapy for Menical Tear? You can continue on with the subject here alternatives to mensical tear surgery

1. Wei LC, Gao SG, Xu M, Jiang W, Tian J, Lei GH. A novel hypothesis: The application of platelet-rich plasma can promote the clinical healing of white-white meniscal tears. Med Sci Monit. 2012 Aug 1; 18(8): HY47-50.

2. Hauser RA, Phillips HJ, Maddela HS The Case for Utilizing Prolotherapy as First-Line Treatment for Meniscal Pathology: A Retrospective Study Shows Prolotherapy is Effective in the Treatment of MRI-Documented Meniscal Tears and Degeneration
Journal of Prolotherapy. 2010; 2(3): 416-437.

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