An Overview on PRP Injections for the Elbow Joint
Elbow injuries are fairly common in the athletic population, mostly from overuse. Common elbow conditions are known as tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis) and golfer’s elbow (medial epicondylitis). Both are typically caused by overuse and can cause debilitating pain and weakness. Patients living in the Santa Barbara, Goleta, Santa Maria and Ventura, California area searching for regenerative medical treatement can depend on Dr. Jervis Yau, elbow specialist. Dr. Yau offers PRP injections for various conditions that affect the elbow.
What is Golfer’s Elbow?
Golfer’s elbow, also known as medial epicondylitis, is most commonly seen in adults. Golfer’s elbow is caused by damage to the flexor and pronator tendons that attach at the medial epicondyle. These tendons are typically injured due to overuse, but can also be a result of a traumatic injury. Despite its name, many people suffering from this condition are not golfers.
What is Tennis Elbow?
Tennis elbow, otherwise known as lateral epicondylitis, is a painful elbow condition caused by repetitive overuse of the extensor tendons that attach to the lateral epicondyle. The condition arises when the tendons become irritated or damaged through overuse and aging. Occasionally, an acute traumatic injury can be the cause of debilitating pain. Tennis elbow is the most common cause of lateral elbow pain in adults. Just like with golfer’s elbow, majority of people suffering from tennis elbow do not actually play tennis.
PRP Injections for Elbow Conditions
Platelet rich plasma (PRP) is a non-surgical treatment option in patients suffering from medial and lateral epicondylitis. PRP injections for the elbow can also be used to treat a number of other elbow injuries.
Blood PRP therapy combines modern medical technology with the human body’s natural ability to heal. Platelets facilitate repair by releasing growth factors that are capable of stimulating cellular growth and regeneration.
Blood PRP Therapy for the Treatment of Golfer’s Elbow and Tennis Elbow
Blood PRP therapy is a successful treatment option for patients suffering from golfer’s elbow or tennis elbow who did not improve through rest, ice, medications and physical therapy.
PRP injections for the elbow begin with Dr. Yau removing 15 ml of blood that is then centrifuged to concentrate the platelet and growth factors. The PRP preparation is then injected into the damaged tissue under ultrasound guidance to facilitate regeneration and healing.
PRP injections for the elbow take less than 15 minutes during an in-office visit with Dr. Yau. The majority of patients will require 1-3 blood PRP treatments, with each treatment spaced 4-6 weeks apart. Since platelet rich plasma is harvested from a patient’s own blood, the risk of complications is low. Dr. Yau will discuss the risks and benefits with each patient during the initial consultation.
For more resources on PRP injections for the elbow, or to determine if you are a candidate for blood PRP therapy, please contact the Santa Barbara, Goleta, Santa Maria and Ventura, California office of elbow specialist Dr. Jervis Yau.