Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Treatment

Uses and Techniques in Singapore

Dr. James - Orthopaedic Surgeon in Singapore

Medically reviewed by Dr. James Tan

If only our bodies could heal themselves faster! If cells could regenerate quicker, we would heal more quickly, and the world of medicine would be turned on its head. While that used to be a distant dream, the technology of Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) is changing things. Healthcare experts around the world are using this regenerative treatment from head to toe. As a new treatment, however, people often wonder how effective it is. Can Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy help you heal faster? Does it really live up to all of the hype that you have been seeing online?

Let’s take an in-depth look at this popular treatment to separate myth from fact. Here is your complete guide to the uses, benefits, and limitations.

What Is Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP)?

Platelet-rich plasma, or PRP, is a therapy that uses a person's own blood to promote the body's own healing process. This regenerating approach works because platelets, a component of blood, have healing abilities. A simple method can be used to concentrate these platelets. The concentrated platelets are injected directly into specific regions to stimulate tissue repair and regeneration, which is especially effective for soft tissue injuries. This can be performed on various parts of the body as part of a variety of treatment methods.

Essentially, PRP injections work by utilising the natural healing ability of our bodies, as they release growth factors. Our systems can work quickly when those powerful blood cells are concentrated and applied directly to the place that needs healing, namely ligaments and muscles. This medication, also known as platelet-rich fibrin (PRF), platelet-rich growth factors (GFs), and platelet concentrates (PCs), has become one of the most frequently discussed subjects in recent decades.

Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy

Image Credit: ARCC

How Is Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Made?

PRP is an entirely natural treatment that utilises ingredients derived directly from your body. The PRP extraction process comprises the following steps:

  • Blood Collection: It is the very first step, where the blood sample is collected. Your healthcare professional will take a blood sample from your arm. It’s the same process as you would experience during a standard blood test.
  • Centrifugation: After the blood has been collected, it will be placed inside a centrifuge.  This is a special type of machine that is able to spin the blood at a very high speed. During this spinning process, the blood is separated into different components based on their densities. In other words, each element is automatically categorised by its weight. This separation can get all of the platelet-rich plasma into one place. From there, it can be collected and used for PRP treatment.
  • Concentration: Once separated, the plasma is concentrated to increase its platelet count. This potent concentrate is then ready for its medicinal use. The PRP extracted can be applied nearly anywhere on the body to treat a wide range of conditions, such as shoulder rotator cuff tears. Regardless of the part of the body that will receive the PRP, this process is essentially the same.

 

Vampire Treatment

Check out how the PRP treatment process works:

The patient's blood is drawn and put in a test tube.

The test tube is sent into a centrifuge machine to separate the red blood cells from platelet-rich plasma.

The plasma is then reinjected into the body.

PRP treatment works by using the patient's blood, separating the platelet-rich plasma from the red blood cells. These platelets contain growth factors that trigger cell reproduction and stimulate tissue regeneration to heal the treated area.

Increasing the concentration of growth factors stimulates the healing process, shortening the healing time for injuries and decreasing pain.

Platelet-Rich Plasma Treatment in Singapore

The PRP therapy taps into your body’s natural healing abilities and can offer transformative results for many people. While it is often associated with aesthetic treatments, its value extends far beyond hair therapy and skin. To fully explore its benefits and see how PRP treatment might work for you, talk to our team of specialists today! We also offer shoulder pain treatment and torn meniscus therapy.

You can reach our Singapore office by phone at +65 6235 8781 or message us on Whatsapp at +65 8028 4572. Ready for a face-to-face chat? Schedule an appointment today. You can also talk to us by clicking the button below.

Locations

Camden Medical

1 Orchard Boulevard, #09-06

Singapore 248649

Mount Alvernia Hospital

820 Thomson Road

Medical Centre D #05-60

Singapore 574623

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The Science Behind the Value of PRP Treatments

Now that you understand how PRP is collected, let’s take a closer look at how it works.

Why Is Platelet-Rich Plasma Valuable?

In basic terms, the platelets in your body are blood cells (that have the shape of a dinner plate) that play a key role in blood clotting. These PRPs help to control bleeding if you are injured, which is a truly essential function. Any time you cut your skin, for example, they naturally go to work to help you heal.

Your body has platelets that hold essential growth factors and small proteins called cytokines. These elements regulate your immune responses and inflammation. They play a crucial role in the natural healing process.

Platelet-rich plasma naturally works within your body but can also be harnessed for this healing power and used on a specific site. When PRP is administered at the site of an injury, these growth factors stimulate angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels), tissue regeneration and cell proliferation. These processes are what can cause this treatment to accelerate the healing process in certain cases.

How Long Has PRP Therapy Been Around?

Scientists in the 1880s initially identified platelets, and during the 1940s, they began their experiment using platelets for facilitating wound healing. By the 1980s, researchers were already employing PRP therapy to mend injured tissues. Modern orthopaedic applications have expanded to include treating degenerative conditions like arthritisheel pains and accelerated healing after surgery, while a wide range of cosmetic options has sprung up for anti-ageing and scar healing.

Is Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy Safe?

PRP therapy has a long history of safe and effective use. Not only has it been studied extensively and widely used in a diverse range of applications, but enough time has passed to see the long-term effects. And, year after year, this treatment has been shown to be safe.

PRP therapy's success lies in its natural approach, as it is derived directly from your body. Unlike some injections that use foreign elements, PRP uses your own plasma, making it safer. The risk of your body rejecting the plasma or having a negative reaction is minimal since it originates from your own body.

It is still important to keep in mind that any procedure involving a needle has a very small risk of infection at the injection site.

What Is It Used For? 

PRP treatment is used for a wide variety of conditions, including the following medical applications:

  • Orthopaedic medicine: In sports medicine and orthopaedics, PRP treatments can be used to treat injuries like ankle sprains, tendonitis, and arthritis. As PRP works to repair tissue repair, it also reduces pain and inflammation while helping keep joints healthy.
  • Dental and Maxillofacial Surgery: PRP is also beneficial during oral and dental surgery because it helps to soften tissues and heal after tooth extractions, dental implants, and gum surgery. Likewise, in certain orthodontics conditions, PRP can be used to speed up tooth movement. Chronic Wound Healing: In certain cases, like diabetic ulcers, doctors face non-healing wounds. By utilising this unique technology, they are able to prompt the body to regenerate tissue and close wounds.
  • Bone Grafting: PRP is often used in conjunction with bone grafts to help your body heal your bone faster and boost the success of bone grafting procedures.
  • Chronic Tendon Injuries: Healthcare professionals around the world have seen promising results when Platelet-Rich Plasma injections are used for chronic tendon issues like tennis elbow and Achilles tendinitis.
  • Chronic Wound Healing: In certain cases, like diabetic ulcers, doctors often face stubborn wounds. By utilising this unique technology, they can prompt the body to regenerate tissue and aid healing in the wounds.

Frequently-Asked Questions About PRP Treatment in Singapore

PRP offers several advantages over traditional treatments. Let’s take a look at why it is so popular. 

  • Natural Recovery: PRP utilises your own blood, making it what is called autologous therapy (which is a treatment that involves taking something from one part of the body and using it elsewhere in the body of the same person) that minimises the risk of bad reactions or infections.
  • Minimally Invasive: PRP treatments are done with injections, which are less invasive than the alternatives of major surgery or other more intensive options. 
  • Little Downtime: By avoiding surgery and other more invasive options, you can greatly reduce your downtime.
  • No Allergies or Rejections: As the therapy uses your own blood components, the risk of having an allergic reaction or immune response is incredibly low.
  • Cost-Effective: Compared to undertaking a surgical procedure, this comparatively quick and simple is usually cheaper, making it a practical option for many people.

About the Author

Dr. James - Orthopaedic Surgeon in Singapore

Dr James Tan Chung Hui

Dr James Tan is a skilled orthopaedic surgeon in Singapore who has more than 10 years of experience in sports injury surgery and exercise medicine. Apart from partnering with the industry to introduce several treatment techniques, Dr Tan has treated athletes from the Singapore National Teams and professional footballers from the Singapore Premier League and the Young Lions. He is a member of the elite Asian Shoulder and Elbow Group and a founding member of the Singapore Shoulder and Elbow Surgery Society.