Dr. Nancy Reid, MHA, DHSc, PA-C
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Introduction: Lateral epicondylitis is a common reason for visits to the orthopedic department. When conservative treatment fails, surgery is typically indicated.
Objectives: to evaluate if platelet-rich plasma injections effectively decrease the need for surgical intervention in patients with lateral epicondylitis who are not responding to other conservative treatments.
Methods: a review of literature was conducted regarding platelet-rich plasma injections and their effectiveness in treating lateral epicondylitis. Main outcome measures included presenting symptoms, an accurate diagnosis for lateral epicondylitis, the number of patients not requiring surgery after platelet-rich plasma injections, and recorded pain scores after platelet-rich plasma injections compared to pain scores after surgical release.
Results: the research suggests promising results that platelet-rich plasma injections decrease the need for surgical intervention in patients with lateral epicondylitis that are not responding to other conservative treatments.
Discussion: There is currently an extensive amount of literature discussing PRP injections having an effective role in regards to treating chronic lateral epicondylitis symptoms that do not improve with conservative management. However, there is very limited published literature with comparative data discussing the continued need for surgical intervention after PRP injections are given. PRP injections continue to demonstrate better therapeutic effects compared to corticosteroid injections and new literature suggests that PRP injections are the new, preferred conservative treatment method for lateral epicondylitis.
Conclusion: The data demonstrates that significantly less patients required surgery each year in patients receiving platelet-rich plasma injections.
Cobbler DR. Are Platelet-Rich Plasma Injections Effective at Reducing the Operative Rate of Lateral Epicondylitis. Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science. 2019; 1(2).
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