Is PRP Right for Me?

Injuries to your foot and ankle aren't just painful, they can also leave you couch-bound for weeks. If you’ve tried treatment after treatment without a significant amount of relief, moving on from your injury might seem hopeless.  But have you considered platelet-rich plasma therapy? It might be just what the doctor ordered.

At Phoenix Foot and Ankle Institute, our team specializes in regenerative medicine for all of your foot and ankle needs. Heading up our team is Dr. Jeffrey McAlister, our board-certified orthopedic surgeon. He knows the ins and outs of PRP therapy and helps you understand how it benefits you and your body.

What is PRP therapy?

Platelet-rich plasma, also known as PRP, is a type of regenerative medicine that helps treat a number of different orthopedic conditions. It’s unique from other types of treatment because it uses your own blood to help your body heal from the inside out. 

Your blood is made up of a liquid portion, known as plasma, which allows your cells to move freely through your body. Your blood also contains platelets, a key component in causing your blood to clot after an injury, but which also have healing properties. This is how PRP therapy helps regenerate your tissue.

Inside of the platelets are proteins that contain special growth factors, which target your injured tissue and begin the healing process, as well as bring other healing cells to the site. So, how are we able to extract these growth factors from your blood?

In order to receive this therapy, Dr. McAlister performs a simple blood draw from your arm. The blood is placed in a centrifuge, which separates the plasma and the platelets from the other blood components. Dr. McAlister then draws up and injects the plasma, which is now saturated with platelets, into the area where it’s needed.

Conditions PRP helps

PRP is used to help many different orthopedic conditions. At our facility, Dr. McAlister not only uses this treatment to help you heal your injury, but he also uses it after surgery to speed up the recovery process. In addition, PRP can be used for conditions that traditionally would have required surgery. 

Although PRP is used for many different injuries all over your body, at our facility, Dr. McAlister uses it for conditions in your foot and ankle, such as:

PRP injections also help with joint pain related to a number of conditions. If you do require surgery for your injury, Dr. McAlister may opt to also use PRP to help you heal faster, so you can get back to your daily activities as soon as possible.

How PRP can benefit you

PRP has several benefits, with probably the biggest one being that it can replace the need for surgery in certain cases. This is due to the way the platelets in the injection are able to heal your tissue over time.

Another benefit to PRP therapy is that it’s minimally invasive, and you’re able to go home the same day. Surgery usually takes several weeks or months to heal, whereas PRP is an in-and-out procedure with minimal side effects.

This type of treatment is also autologous, meaning it’s derived from your own blood. This significantly cuts down on adverse effects, including allergic reactions. 

PRP is a great alternative to other types of treatments that may offer short-term relief but don’t fix the problem. For example, long term use of anti-inflammatories can lead to stomach issues and exacerbate high blood pressure. Steroid injections also provide relief, but over time lead to deterioration of your tendons and cartilage.

If you’re tired of dealing with ankle pain and are interested in learning more about PRP, call either of our convenient locations at 602-761-7819, or book an appointment online with us today.

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