PRP Vs Stem Cell
A question we get asked a lot is “What is the difference between PRP and Stem Cell Therapy?” It is important to understand the differences and the benefits of both.
What is PRP?
PRP therapy is ideal for patients who are looking for long-term pain relief and healing without surgery, and for those who are not candidates for surgery
Platelets are the first response to injury
When you flood the area with platelets, repair is enhanced
With healing and growth factors, create an environment for stem cell recruitment and new blood vessels to bring more blood supply to the area
Increased level of platelets in an area stimulates regrowth versus our normal level of platelets
Can treat acute and chronic tendon and ligament injuries such as partial tears, plantar fasciitis, rotator cuff injuries, anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries, tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, tendonitis, strains, and sprains
PRP is generally good for helping things that may either heal on their own (given enough time) or are maybe stuck in the healing process and need a little “kick” to get things going towards resolution
Also used as cosmetic purposes-facials, hands, scars, hair
What to expect from a procedure?
PRP injections are a much simpler procedure than surgery
Performed as a short outpatient procedure, a small sample of your blood is drawn (similar to a lab test sample) and spun at high speeds, separating the platelets from the other components.
The concentrated platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is then injected into and around the point of injury.
No stitches are necessary because only a needle is used
20-60ml of blood taken from the patient
Can take up to one hour for the procedure (spin down)
Side effects: infection, nerve injuries, pain at the injection site, tissue damage
Performed safely in our office
PRP therapy relieves pain without the risks of surgery, general anesthesia, or hospital stays and without a prolonged recovery
Cost less than stem cell
What is a Stem Cell?
A cell that doesn’t have a role yet
Undifferentiated, continuously divide, can differentiate into any cell in the body (proliferation), “blank cell”
Exponential growth proliferating +250 days (hence why it may take time, however why they have long term effect)
Rebuilds cartilage, tendons, and ligaments. “Regenerative cells”
Stem cell therapy would be more appropriate for degenerative diseases where there is lost tissue (like chronic arthritis, a partial tendon or ligament tear, a low back disc where there are torn fibers allowing the disc to bulge)
The younger you are the more stem cells you have
Three types: Totipotent (early embryos, can form complete organisms), Pluripotent (blastocyst), and Multipotent (fetal tissue, cord blood, and adult stem cells)
Sources:embryonic (7 to 10 days after fertilization) (not legal in US except for research), fetal (gonads of aborted fetuses), umbilical (Wharton’s jelly, similar to bone marrow), placental (10x as many than cord), adult (fat, skin, brain, bone marrow) (only as healthy as you are)
PRP versus Stem cell?
PRP and Stem Cell have been found to be beneficial in:
Rotator cuff tears
Inflammation from herniated disc
Both use body’s natural healing processes
PRP can be used for cosmetic purposes
Stem cells are more powerful than PRP
"PRP is like adding water and fertilizer to a damaged plant in a garden; stem cells are like adding new seeds to the garden and hiring a gardener!"
To fully understand how you can benefit from PRP and Stem Cell Therapy you can meet with one of our experts to discuss your best options.