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Platelet Rich Plasma is a blood preparation where a portion of plasma rich in platelets is extracted from the rest of the blood.

platelet rich plasma separated by centrifuge
Centrifuged blood sample separating out the platelet-rich layer.

What are platelets?

Platelets are small blood fragments without a nucleus, derived from a larger specialist cell in the blood. They can recognise a damaged vessel at which situation they congregate, transform in shape and combine together to seal the vessel. They then trigger the chemical cascade that creates a true blood clot. Finally they produce substances that signal other cells to assist in wound healing.

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How is PRP prepared?

To prepare platelet-rich plasma, blood is taken from a vein in the common way and then spun in a centrifuge to concentrate the blood components into layers - the platelet layer is then withdrawn within a small volume of plasma. It is then injected or made into a preparation in combination with other orthobiologic materials and placed into the area being treated.

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Efficacy of platelet rich plasma

Unfortunately the literature is controversial as to the efficacy as it appears to depend upon the precise method that the platelet rich plasma is prepared and used.

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Synonyms: 
PRP
autologous conditioned plasma
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Dr Sheila Strover (Editor)
BSc (Hons), MB BCh, MBA

See biography...

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