We want your PRP treatment to go as smoothly as possible. Please follow the instructions below.
Before Your Appointment
- The healing process of PRP may diminished by anti-inflammatory medications. If you are currently taking any non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (Ibuprofen, Aspirin, Aleve, Naproxen, etc.), you should stop taking them 5-7 days before your scheduled appointment. If you are unsure if a medication you are taking is an anti-inflammatory, please ask a clinic care coordinator to review your medication list.
- Tylenol (acetaminophen) is not an anti-inflammatory medication and can be taken as needed for pain (not to exceed 1000mg in a 6-hour period). Please ask your Reflex physician if you have any questions or concerns regarding NSAID use, or if you have any questions about the procedure.
- If you have an acute illness within the week prior to your PRP, please call our office to discuss symptoms, as this may possibly require that we reschedule your appointment.
- To decrease the risk of infection, we recommend that PRP not be performed within 72 hours of any dental procedure including dental cleaning.
- Please wear loose clothing that allows the provider and clinic care coordinator easy access to your arm and your knee(s).
- To help improve blood collection drink plenty of water on the day of your appointment.
- Take a brisk 15-minute walk 30 minutes prior to your appointment, as this will increase the number of circulating platelets.
- If your provider has prescribed you an anxiolytic medication (such as Valium) to lessen your stress during the procedure, please take the prescribed dosage one hour before your appointment time. Please plan to have someone drive you to and from your appointment since you will not be able to drive safely if you have taken an anxiolytic medication.
After Your Appointment
- No NSAIDs. For the best results you should not take any over the counter NSAIDs such as Advil, Motrin (ibuprofen) or Aleve (naproxen) for 1 week following your PRP treatment. PRP induces an inflammatory reaction needed to initiate the healing cascade. NSAID medications interfere with this action and may decrease the effectiveness of the treatment. Tylenol (acetaminophen) can be taken for pain, not to exceed 4000 mg in a 24 hour period.
- Reflex Salve will help. We highly recommend massaging in our own anti-inflammatory Reflex Salve several times daily for the week following your PRP procedure. The anti-inflammatory effects of the salve work via a different mechanism than NSAIDs – the salve can help reduce discomfort, without interfering with the PRP treatment.
- What are my activity limitations? We suggest avoiding strenuous or high-impact exercise (e.g., running or jumping) until the inflammatory phase of treatment has passed, typically 3-5 days. Start with low-impact exercises such as walking or using an elliptical and cautiously advance your regimen over the following 7-10 days. A recommended approach is to increase your activity level by 25% every 4 days. If you experience increased pain, rest for a few days and then restart with low-impact activities. The main point is that you ease back into your normal routine.
- Will I miss work? Although it is common for patients to have some mild soreness after PRP procedures, only a few experience significant pain. Since everyone responds differently to treatment, we want patients to be aware that it is possible to be sore for several days and may even need to take a few days off work. Although most patients return to work the next day, it is advised that you make necessary preparations in case your level of pain is greater than anticipated. If needed, we will gladly provide a ‘Doctor’s note’ for two days leave from work.
- When will I start noticing an improvement? The healing cascade is a complex process that has 3 main phases: inflammatory, regenerative, and fibrosis. The inflammatory phase begins in the 1st few days and lasts up to 3 weeks. The regenerative phase begins the 2nd week and peaks around weeks 6 to 8. Some patients may notice early benefit after a few weeks, but most people should expect to wait about 2 months before there is significant improvement. Healing takes a lot of time. The final fibrosis stage (also known as scar formation) can last up to 2 years.
- What if I experience Pain? If you experience knee discomfort, use a heating pad on your knees for twenty minutes every hour until the pain improves. We do not recommend using an ice pack at this time, as it can detrimentally affect the PRP healing process.
- Complications are rare, but know what to look for. If you develop unexpected complications after your PRP procedure such as severe pain, significant swelling, knee redness, or a fever over 101 degrees Fahrenheit, you should seek immediate medical attention. Please contact Reflex and we will do our best to have a Reflex physician see you immediately. If this is not possible, you will need to see your primary care provider or be evaluated at an urgent care facility. If symptoms are rapidly progressing, you should seek evaluation at an emergency department.
- We are here if you have questions. Please call us if you have any questions. We want to help you achieve an optimal outcome from your PRP treatment.