25 Jun PRP Therapy vs. Regenerative Therapies
With a constant flux of new and upcoming remedies and procedures arising in modern day medicine, it is no wonder that PRP Therapy and Regenerative Therapies are easily confused. Both of these therapies serve a wide range of people focus on healing in two completely different ways. In order to understand which technique is better or more suited for your needs, it is recommended to start by discussing what they are first.
What is PRP Therapy?
Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy, or PRP Therapy for short, is a type of procedure that utilizes platelets in order to quicken healing in the body. This procedure works through the use of platelets, white blood cells and growth factors. Several functions that allow this therapy to work are:
- Growth factors help with delegating and supervising repair processes at the area of injection.
- Platelets contain proteins in the blood that help wounds heal.
- WBC’s help spark up inflammatory processes, which are the first phase of healing.
How does PRP Therapy work?
This resourceful therapy works by collecting a small sample from the person receiving the procedure. After this small sample is taken, the sample is then added to a specialized device (usually a centrifuge). Within this centrifuge, the sample spins at a high enough speed where the platelets are separated from other components of the blood. This separation allows for the doctor and/or health professional to use the highly concentrated plasma in a safe injection to be injected into the area of concern.
This procedure is typically done every couple of months (between 2 – 3) and is given in multiple sets of injections.
What is PRP Therapy used for?
PRP therapy, while not FDA approved, is used for various types of illnesses and injuries. Research has shown that the therapy is often used for;
- Hair growth
- Facial rejuvenation
- Strained/Pulled Muscles
- Inflammations in different locations, and more.
What is/are Regenerative Therapies?
According to NCBI, regenerative medicine implements lots of strategies, “The field of regenerative medicine encompasses numerous strategies, including the use of materials and de novo generated cells, as well as various combinations thereof, to take the place of missing tissue, effectively replacing it both structurally and functionally, or to contribute to tissue healing (5).”
Regenerative therapies are all very different from each other but have one goal in mind; to regenerate tissues, and organs allowing the parts to regain functionality. A perfect example of this would be diabetes.
In this article, we are going to be focusing on and exploring regenerative therapies that use amniotic and umbilical cord tissue.
While PRP therapy uses the patient’s own platelets, growth factors and white blood cells, regenerative therapies explore the process of extracting rejuvenating cells. For the procedure, stem cells from fat tissue or bone marrow are used together with platelets. Bone marrow stem cells, also called autologous mesenchymal cells, help to facilitate the body’s repair processes. Stem cells from fat tissue combined with platelets work together to aid in healing osteoarthritic joints by facilitating the body’s processes as well.
It is also good to know that another difference between the 2 therapies is that PRP therapy has very few stem cells involved.
The use of amniotic and umbilical cord tissue is referred to as “products of conception.” These products of conception have been researched and found to contain a relatively high number of regenerative cells, such as stem cells, growth factors, cytokines, and microRNA.
The procedure uses materials that include;
- Amniotic Fluid
- Placental membrane
- Umbilical Cord Tissue
- Umbilical Cord Blood
- Wharton’s Jelly
The benefits of using regenerative therapies are a bit on the unknown side. Like PRP therapy, regenerative therapies are not FDA approved, and while research has been conducted, they have not been tested by the FDA. This is also a reason why insurance companies are hesitant to add regenerative therapies and PRP Therapy to coverage plans.
What can Regenerative Therapies help with?
Regenerative therapies are undergoing studies looking at those suffering from a number of conditions such as:
- Cerebral Palsy
- Back pain
- Fibromyalgia, and more.
It’s important to understand the difference between PRP versus a true regenerative therapy.