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Platelet-Rich Plasma in the Treatment of Cartilage Defects and Early Osteoarthritis of the Knee

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Sports Injuries

Abstract

With increasing frequency, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) preparations have been used to treat cartilage lesions to regenerate tissue homeostasis and retard the progression of knee osteoarthritis (OA). Several authors reported promising preliminary clinical results after the treatment of knee OA with PRP injections. In a prospective case series, 50 patients with knee OA were treated with two intra-articular injections of autologous PRP and followed up for a minimum of 12 months. All patients showed significant improvement in all scores at 6–12 months (p < 0.01), by means of diminishing pain and improved symptoms and quality of life. No significant difference in improvement was found between the evaluated subgroups (p < 0.01). In another prospective, randomized study, 93 patients (119 knees) with early stages of knee OA were followed up for a minimum of 2 years; 50 knees were randomly selected prior to the first injection to receive a second cycle at the completion of 1 year. At 2 years, scores declined in both groups but remained above the pretreatment values; patients with two cycles showed higher mean values in all the scores. However, the clinical efficacy of PRP remains under debate, and a standardized protocol has not yet been established. Different PRP products might be more or less appropriate to treat different types of tissues and pathologies.

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Gobbi, A., Karnatzikos, G., Lad, D.G. (2015). Platelet-Rich Plasma in the Treatment of Cartilage Defects and Early Osteoarthritis of the Knee. In: Doral, M.N., Karlsson, J. (eds) Sports Injuries. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-36569-0_157

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