HISTORY OF PLATELET RICH PLASMA THERAPY
- Investigation into the use of PRP first reported as early as the 1970s, but the necessary equipment was large, expensive
- Interest in growth factors in 1990s and multiple reports and studies in maxillofacial dental, periodontal surgery, cosmetic surgery, and skin grafting showed dramatically improved healing with PRP.
- Early 2000s, the use of PRP expanded into orthopedics to augment healing in bone grafts and fractures.
Success there encouraged its use in sports medicine for connective tissue repair.
- Mishra and Pavelko, associated with Stanford University, published the first human study supporting the use of PRP for chronic tendon problems in 2006, which reported a 93% reduction in pain at two year follow up.
In 2006, Murray et al demonstrated successful increase in healing of a central anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) defect
- Then, in 2008, Pittsburgh Steelers’ wide receiver, Hines Ward, received PRP for a knee medial collateral ligament sprain, and the Steelers went on to win SuperBowl XLII. Ward credited PRP for his ability to play in that game and his success with this treatment was discussed on national television.
- Since then, other high profile athletes – such as Takashi Saito, closing pitcher for the L.A. Dodgers, and golfer Tiger Woods – credit PRP for helping them return to their sport.
- PRP continues to gain wider acceptance in the sports world with studies continuing to validate the use of PRP for ligament and tendon injuries, knee osteoarthritis, degenerative knee cartilage, chronic elbow tendonosis, muscle strain and tears, jumpers knee, plantar fasciitis and rotator cuff tendinopathy – albeit some skeptics and controversy remains.