According to the research study by Mayo Clinic, combining platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections and tenotomy produces showed “significant improvement” in treatments of patients with long standing tendon injuries. The findings from this research were published in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. The author of the study Jay Smith, MD, states that this disorder is difficult to treat and most patients receive different therapies depending on what their doctor’s offer. This was the first clinical study that investigated combining both treatments for injured tendons.
The study consisted of patients who have experienced chronic recalcitrant tendinopathy (chronic non healed tendon) which lasted over 3 months. They were treated with PRP injection and ultrasound-guided percutaneous tenotomy. The first part of the study involved forty one patients. They had to complete a survey gathering had to complete a survey that collected a wide variety of data including their pain level, hemoglobin and white blood cell concentrations, anthropomorphic data, PRP samples and more. The second part of the study involved 34 patients who had to return to the clinic after PRP injections and tenotomy.
The follow up continued for 14 months and showed “maximum benefits” from combining both therapies after 4 months. The results showed functional improvements of 68%, worst-pain improvements of 58%, and patient satisfaction and procedure recommendation to others was at 83%. Even though after the treatments none of the tendons have showed normal sonographic appearance, 84% did improve in echotexture and 82% had diminished intratendinous neovascularity.
It is still necessary to conduct larger studies to determine whether the two therapy combination is particularly beneficial to certain injuries or tendon types. This study however, did establish that the combination is safe and effective in helping people with ongoing tendinopathy.
You can learn more about the study by visiting www.orthosupersite.com.