Nonsurgical procedures that are alternatives to surgery:
Sometimes, surgery is the only way to alleviate some foot problems. Other times, more conservative treatment is able to resolve the problem. When conservative treatment fails, there are also some minimally invasive procedures that we can do in order to prevent the need for surgery.
Two of these alternatives to surgery include: PRP injections and Amniotic Allograft injections.
When are PRP injections and amniotic allograft injections indicated?
In podiatric medicine, PRP injections and amniotic allograft injections can be used for multiple things. This includes, but is not limited to, tendinitis, plantar fasciitis, arthritis, sprains of joints and ligaments, and strains of muscles and tendons.
What is a PRP injection?
PRP stands for “Platelet Rich Plasma”. PRP therapy is considered regenerative medicine and is able to take the natural healing abilities of the human body and amplify them by concentrating growth factors in specific areas where they are needed.
Platelet rich plasma consists of our patients’ own blood plasma and their own platelets. Plasma is comprised mostly of water and proteins and provides the fluid to make blood able to flow through our blood vessels. Platelets have been shown to contain many factors that initiated the healing process. When there is an injury, platelets are the first cells to arrive at the scene in order to stop the bleeding and start the healing process.
Platelets also bring many growth factors to an injury in order to accelerate the healing. They are the first step in healing musculoskeletal injuries including bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, fascia, wounds and all other anatomy.
How are PRP injections done?
In order to perform PRP injections, we first take a sample of blood from our patients’ arm. We then process the blood in a centrifuge in order to separate its components. The blood is then processed in order to separate the platelets and the plasma from the other blood cells. This leaves a concentrated solution of plasma and platelets. We then inject this concentrated solution at the site of your injury. Often, we will use ultrasound and/or fluoroscopic guidance in order to place the injection perfectly. These activated platelets immediately start the healing process. They stimulate and increase the natural healing process that occurs after an injury. They also continue to work for a long time after the injection.
We have seen amazing results where patients have had pain for a long period of time, feel drastically better after PRP injection. Sometimes, one injection is all that is necessary, and other times multiple injections are necessary.
What is amniotic allograft injection?
Amniotic allograft injection consists of injecting amniotic tissue that was harvested from an umbilical cord and amniotic tissue. Recent studies and breakthroughs have shown that the materials present in this amniotic tissue of the umbilical cord create a regenerative healing environment. It also modulates inflammation and promotes tissue growth.
Is amniotic allograft injection safe?
Amniotic allograft injection is made of umbilical cord and amniotic tissue that is freeze-dried and ground into small particles making it safe for implantation. The tissues is obtained from consenting mothers to donate their birth tissue from live, full-time births across the United States. It is screened and handled in a process based upon requirements by the FDA and the American Association of Tissue Banks. These are the organizations that have decades of experience handling all implantable human tissue. Today, more than half a million of these procedures have been performed with this technology, and there have been zero reported incidences of tissue rejection or disease transmission.
How are amniotic allograft injections done?
Prior to performing amniotic allograft injection, we will obtain local anesthesia to the injury area with lidocaine. The amniotic allograft comes in a vial as a powder. We will suspend the powder in saline prior to injection. We will then perform a precisely placed injection into the area of pathology. Often, we will use fluoroscopic and/or ultrasound guidance to ensure proper placement.
We have seen amazing results where patients have had pain for a long period of time, feel drastically better after amniotic allograft injection. Sometimes, one injection is all that is necessary, and other times multiple injections are necessary.
Call today to schedule a consultation to discuss alternatives to surgery including PRP injections and amniotic allograft injections.