Use of Platelet-rich Plasma Injections for Treatment in Patients Diagnosed With Achilles Tendinopathy
Athletic Training M.S.
Background: Achilles tendinopathies are common among individuals who are active, usually participating in a sport with a high volume of repetitive motion. Historically, these injuries have been treated with conservative home exercises. If the patient exhausts their conservative treatment options, the next step is typically surgery to repair the tendon (Maffulli, 2015). Recently, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections have become more commonly used to treat musculoskeletal injuries and are considered minimally invasive procedures. This allows the patient to return home immediately post injection and return to activity within a few days. However, the research shows mixed results in terms of its effectiveness for treating these conditions. Purpose: Determine whether platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections are an effective treatment option for individuals diagnosed with Achilles tendinopathy. Results: Sixteen scholarly articles were analyzed using a matrix format and were evaluated with The John Hopkins Nursing Evidence-Based Practice appraisal tool. Eight of the 16 articles were in favor of using PRP injections to treat Achilles tendinopathies. This was determined using the VISA-A as the primary outcome measure while return to function, tendon thickness and vascularity were common secondary outcomes. Five articles reported PRP injections were not an effective treatment option; three articles concluded they required larger scale studies to make a determination. Conclusion: PRP injections can be used secondary to traditional treatment of eccentric exercise and other modalities for patients who are looking for a minimally invasive treatment option. Implications for Research and Practice: The findings of this research does not outline a clear determination for whether or not PRP injections are an effective treatment option for participants diagnosed with Achilles tendinopathy. Further research is needed on “excellent” quality articles with larger numbers of participants and with standardization of the preparation/procedure of the PRP injection.
Athletic Training M.S.
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Pearson, N. M. (2021). Use of Platelet-rich Plasma Injections for Treatment in Patients Diagnosed With Achilles Tendinopathy [Masterʼs thesis, Bethel University]. Spark Repository. https://spark.bethel.edu/etd/507