Primary & Urgent Care - Dallas, Texas
Isaac Z. Pugach, M.D., BCIM
Complete Med Care
8989 Forest Lane
Dallas, Texas 75243
Copyright 2006-2019 by Complete Med Care All rights reserved email: info @
PRP Injection Treatment (Platelet Rich Plasma)
Those suffering from osteoarthritis, tendinitis, and other causes of chronic pain often reach an impasse: narcotic pain-relievers, steroid injections, or surgery. For many patients, none of the options are particularly attractive, and each has serious drawbacks. However, now there is another alternative available - platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment.
What is PRP? How is PRP procedure performed?
Essentially, PRP is your own concentrated blood that has very high saturation of active healing components that is injected back into your body. Approximately 3 test tubes of your blood is taken, mixed with small amount of anti-coagulant to prevent clotting, and placed in a centrifuge to isolate platelet cells and healing growth factors. The platelet containing concentrate is PRP, and it is injected back into your joint or wherever you have chronic pain. PRP contains approximately 5-10 times the typical amount of platelets and growth factors. These substances help stimulate your body’s own healing response. PRP therapy is targeted to the area(s) needing treatment by localized injection.
What are the Medical Uses for PRP?
Medical indication for PRP include chronic pain and degenerative conditions, including:
- Knee osteoarthritis (chronic knee pain)
- Plantar fasciitis
- Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis)
- Achilles tendinitis
- Chronic heel pain
- Patellar tendinitis
… and others
How effective is PRP therapy? What are the alternatives?
PRP is not an instant fix and it often takes several months and possibly 2 treatments before taking effect. As with all medical treatments, there is no guarantee, and in some patients it may not work.
PRP therapy has been a target of many studies that involve treatment of knee osteoarthritis, and they have shown that while steroids are often very effective short term (3 months or less) and work much quicker, patients with PRP injection generally have less pain after 6 months after treatment. Steroid injections are a lot cheaper than PRP, and are covered by health insurance, unlike PRP.
Hyaluronic acid injections, is another alternative treatment for knee osteorthritis. The cost of these injection is high, and could easily be higher than the cost of PRP, depending on the number of injections given. A 2014 review article appearing in Arthritis Research & Therapy concluded that “current evidence appears to favor PRP over hyaluronan for the treatment of osteoarthritis.”
The studies for other degerative conditions are not as numerous and not as large as the studies of knee osteorthritis, but the studies show benefit. However, a 2017 review article regarding treatment of tennis elbow, published in The Physian and Sports Medicine, concluded that steroid injection is more effective short term, but PRP is more effective intermediate and long term - thus the authors recommend PRP as the prefered treatment for lateral epicondylitis.
Is PRP Safe?
Many studies have been done on PRP, and it is generally considered very safe. However, as every medical procedure, PRP has small risk of infection, allergic reaction, bleeding, inflammation, and damage to adjacent structures.
PRP is FDA approved for use in orthopedic surgeries as an additive to bone grafts to promote healing. PRP’s use for tendinitis, osteoarthritis, and other chronic pain is not FDA approved, but considered “off-label”, which is authorized when appropriate. Given the high cost to get an FDA approval, it is likely PRP’s use for chronic pain will remain “off-label.”
Why Choose Complete Med Care for PRP Treatment of Chronic Pain in Dallas?
We use Harvest PRP Smart-Prep 2 kits which consistently produce the highest concentrations of platelets and growth factors, as compared to all other commercial kits, as of 2019. The Harvest PRP system is a double-spin process that achieves much higher concentration of platelets, as compared to single-spin method. While the double-spin process is more involved and more expensive, it results in a significantly higher platelet count, if appropriate PRP kits are used (if kits are not used, it is possible that double spin will actually reduce the platelet count).
Dr. Isaac Z. Pugach has been performing joint and other musculo-skeletal injections for over 15 years as part of his practice, and performs only procedures that have a solid scientific evidence behind it. Dr. Pugach chose Harvest PRP system for the office due to the very strong data that shows that this system is one of the best, if not the best, PRP kit available on the market. Our clinic is not a PRP mill, where everyone gets a PRP injection regardless of patient condition: PRP is for patients who have had a thorough evaluation of the cause of the pain and have had pain for a prolonged period of time.
Does insurance cover PRP treatment? What is the cost of PRP injections?
Health insurance covers the evaluation visit before the PRP injection. It does not cover the cost of the injection - this will be done on a second visit, and the typical cost of PRP injection is $700.
To schedule evaluation for PRP therapy, please call our office at 972-792-7777.