Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Legal blood doping for athletes!

I am not talking about the blood doping we have heard and read so much about over the last few decades to promote endurance performance, but rather a method to treat soft tissue injuries that are traditionally very challenging to heal.

This method is known as Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy, and has been found to be very effective in
stimulating recovery in non-healing injuries, for example Achilles tendon injuries. Although not 100% clinically proven, it has been found to speed up the healing from soft tissue injury as the platelet component is full of healing factors

Platelets, found in the blood, are introduced to stimulate a supra-physiologic release of growth factors in an attempt to jump start healing in chronic injuries. Growth factors found in the bodies blood, release a supra-maximal quantity of these growth factors to stimulate recovery in non-healing injuries.

Examples of these Growth Factors include:

Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)
  • Stimulates cell replication
  • Promotes angiogenesis
  • Promotes epithelialization
  • Promotes granulation tissue formation
Transforming growth factor (TGF)
  • Promotes formation of extracellular matrix
  • Regulates bone cell metabolism
Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)r
  • Promotes angiogenesis
Epidermal growth factor (EGF)
  • Promotes cell differentiation and stimulates: re-epithelialisation, angiogenesis and collagenase activity
Fibroblast growth factor (FGF)
  • Promotes proliferation of endothelial cells and fibroblasts
  • Stimulates angiogenesis
The process of PRP is a fairly simple one: doctors basically take some of your own blood, run it through a centrifuge and then pull out the platelet rich part from the top and re-inject it into the damaged tissue.

It is clear that PRP provides a promising alternative to surgery by promoting safe and natural healing. Great news for anyone suffering from that nagging soft tissue injury.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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