, Volume 131, Issue 3, pp 311-317
Date: 17 Aug 2010

Infiltration of plasma rich in growth factors for osteoarthritis of the knee short-term effects on function and quality of life

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Abstract

Purpose

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a highly prevalent, chronic, degenerative condition that generates a high expense. Alternative and co-adjuvant therapies to improve the quality of life and physical function of affected patients are currently being sought.

Methods

A total of 808 patients with knee pathology were treated with PRGF (plasma rich in growth factors), 312 of them with OA of the knee (Outerbridge grades I–IV) and symptoms of >3 months duration met the inclusion criteria and were evaluated to obtain a sample of 261 patients, 109 women and 152 men, with an average age of 48.39. Three intra-articular injections of autologous PRGF were administered at 2-week intervals in outpatient surgery. The process of obtaining PRGF was carried out following the Anitua Technique. Participants were asked to fill out a questionnaire with personal data and the following assessment instruments: VAS, SF-36, WOMAC Index and Lequesne Index before the first infiltration of PRGF and 6 months after the last infiltration.

Results

Statistically significant differences (P < 0.0001) between pre-treatment and follow-up values were found for pain, stiffness and functional capacity in the WOMAC Index; pain and total score, distance and daily life activities in the Lequesne Index; the VAS pain score; and the SF-36 physical health domain. There were no adverse effects related to PRGF infiltration.

Conclusion

At 6 months following intra-articular infiltration of PRGF in patients with OA of the knee, improvements in function and quality of life were documented by OA-specific and general clinical assessment instruments. These favourable findings point to consider PRGF as a therapy for OA.

This research was funded by Fundación García Cugat.