What is PRP?
Platelet rich plasma (PRP) is blood plasma with concentrated platelets (the body’s repair-men for damaged tissue). The concentrated platelets found in PRP contain growth factors that are vital to initiate tissue healing and repair, promoting development of new blood vessels and stimulating the healing process.
How does PRP therapy work?
Blood is taken from your pet and filtered through a special device that separates the different types of blood cell. The harvested PRP is then injected into the area of injury, usually a joint or tendon. The procedure is usually performed with the pet sedated, and takes about an hour. There is usually more PRP harvested than is required at the time, and this is stored for future use for your pet.
What are the potential benefits from treatment?
The main benefit is that owners see a significant improvement in clinical signs (lameness and stiffness) in their pet. This may reduce or eliminate the need for other medications and treatments. A major advantage of this treatment is that no foreign substance is used; we are using the patient’s own platelets, so there is no risk of disease transmission.
What are the alternatives?
They include surgery, anti-inflammatory medications, steroid injections and physiotherapy. These may still be required in some cases and we will advise you on their use.
What are the possible risks or complications of this procedure?
As with all surgery, there is a risk of some complications, they are rare, but you should be aware of them. They include: infection at the site of the injection, initial increase in inflammation, bleeding or bruising post operatively and no change in the clinical signs.
How should I care for my pet post-operatively?
There may be some initial discomfort and we may advise that your pet continue to receive anti-inflammatory medications before and after the procedure. For some dogs, we may change them onto a paracetamol based medication.
Cold compress over the site of injection and gentle massage of the surrounding area.
Minimal activity (walks and games) for the first 3-5 days, and then start to build up the activity levels slowly. Don’t overdo it until we say!
We will wish to recheck the patient, usually one week after the injections and one month later.