Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy for Rotator Cuff Repairs

Ernesto Luciano-Perez, MD, of Virginia Orthopaedic & Spine Specialists

Ernesto Luciano-Perez, MD, Medical Director of Bon Secours Sports Medicine

Does PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) increase the healing rate of high risk rotator cuff repairs?

The rates of re-tears after rotator cuff repair of high risk patients continue to be high. Factors such as larger tear size, increased age and increased fatty degeneration of rotator cuff muscle play a significant role.

Over time, we have managed to improve outcomes by improving fixation techniques and improving rehabilitation protocols. But what about a biologic aid to improve healing such as PRP?

A recent article in The American Journal of Sports Medicine looked at this question.

The reported study failed to show an improvement in the re-tear rates in this high risk group. It also suggested a slight risk in infection rates with the use of platelet rich plasma. Given these findings the routine use of PRP in this high risk is not recommended.

Reference: The American Journal of Sports Medicine Vol. 40 No. 2, 2012.

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Dr. Ernesto Luciano-Perez is a Hampton Roads physician who specializes in Sports Medicine, Arthroscopic Surgery and General Orthopaedics. He received his board certification in 1993 from the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery. Dr. Luciano-Perez’s affiliations and memberships include Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgery, Arthroscopy Association of North America, American Medical Association, Virginia Orthopaedic Society and Southern Orthopaedic Association.

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