A sign that PRP may be here to stay… The governing body the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) clarified their stance on use of PRP in professional athletes. Initially they had no opinion as the use was minimal amongst athletes. However word began to spread about this natural based therapy that can potentially accelerate healing utilizing the patients own healing capacity. Then the WADA made a decision that athletes could receive the treatment if they file the appropriate paperwork; a therapeutic use exemption (TUE). Later PRP use was restricted to tendons or the muscle tendon junction. It was presumed that PRP & the growth factors associated with it may promote muscle hypertrophy (growth), thus would be considered a performance enhancing drug.
This made little sense to practicing physicians, because no literature has proven that PRP has any systemic effects other than promoting local healing. Therefore the WADA as of Oct 2010 reversed it’s stance on PRP, allowing athletes unrestricted use of this emerging therapy. The treatment has become very popular amongst elite athletes but is growing even faster in recreational athletes & “weekend warriors.” Hopefully without the restrictions & increased exposure, more controlled trials will emerge. Many professional sports look to the WADA to influence their particular guidlines.