Hyaluronic Acid vs. PRP for Knee Pain
Which is better Hyaluronic Acid or PRP Therapy?
Knee pain can negatively impact a person’s ability to carry on with everyday life. When painful knee conditions reduce an individual’s mobility and quality of life, most people start looking into the treatment options available.
If you’re experiencing knee pain, you may have heard about hyaluronic acid injections and platelet-rich plasma therapy in your research. While both are used to treat knee pain, it’s important to take a closer look at which therapy option might best fit your need.
Hyaluronic Acid for Knee Pain
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance in the body, one that helps cushion the joints and protect them from impact. Injections of hyaluronic acid can treat knee pain by supplementing the body’s natural supply and targeting a problem area. These injections can relieve knee pain, and make daily activities easier to complete.
While hyaluronic acid injections can help relieve pain, it’s important to consider a couple of things when comparing this treatment with platelet-rich plasma therapy.
Hyaluronic acid injections might not benefit overweight or obese patients as well as thin patients. Additionally, these injections, though they are effective in relieving pain, may not slow the rate of joint damage for patients with chronic conditions.
Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy for Knee Pain
Platelet Rich Plasma therapy can be beneficial for individuals who are suffering from knee conditions like osteoarthritis. It’s a relatively new treatment, but research has suggested that it’s quite effective in reducing pain and inflammation.
These injections, like hyaluronic acid, use the body’s own contents to stimulate healing. Unlike hyaluronic acid injections, however, platelet rich plasma therapy makes use of a patient’s plasma-rich blood. This blood is collected and then injected at the site of the patient’s pain.
PRP therapy has been shown to reduce pain and inflammation in both long-lasting conditions and short-term injuries. In addition, this type of treatment very rarely results in any significant side effects. Of those that occur, the most common include discomfort or pain at the site of the injection.
Which Treatment Is Superior?
It’s important for patients to have frank, straightforward conversations with their medical care providers regarding their treatment options. Depending on the individual and their unique knee pain condition, one treatment may be more appropriate than the other.
For example, in overweight patients, the long-term benefits of platelet-rich plasma therapies outweigh the long-term benefits of hyaluronic acid injections. That said, the pain relief possible with PRP is generally lower than relief via HA injections. For short-term conditions, hyaluronic acid injections may work better than PRP, but for long-term relief, PRP may be the best option available.
Speak with your medical healthcare provider about which option will best suit your medical needs when it comes to relieving your knee pain.