Does Intra-Articular Injection of Platelet-Rich Plasma Have an Effect on Cartilage Thickness in Patients with Primary Knee Osteoarthritis?

Citation:
Baki, N. A. M., Z. O. Nawito, N. M. S. Abdelsalam, D. Sabry, H. Elashmawy, N. A. Seleem, A. A. A. - A. Taha, and M. E. Ghobashy, "Does Intra-Articular Injection of Platelet-Rich Plasma Have an Effect on Cartilage Thickness in Patients with Primary Knee Osteoarthritis?", Current rheumatology reviews, 2021.

Abstract:

OBJECTIVES: To determine the effect of intra-articular injection of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) in patients with primary knee osteoarthritis (OA) by clinical evaluation and ultrasonographic (US) assessment of cartilage thickness.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: A total of 100 patients with mild to severe primary knee OA using the Kellgren-Lawrence (K-L) grading scale were included and divided into two groups. Group I included 50 patients who were given two intra-articular knee injections of PRP, 1 week apart; Group II included 50 patients who received non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and chondroprotective drugs. Functional assessment of all OA patients done using the basal WOMAC score, at 2 and 6 months.US assessment of femoral condylar cartilage thickness was conducted basally and at 6 months.

RESULTS: Improvement of WOMAC score was observed at 2 and 6 months in Group I following PRP injection compared to Group II (p values < 0.001), The improvement of WOMAC in Group I occurred in all severity degrees of OA (p < 0.001). Moreover, a significant increase in cartilage thickness at the intercondylar area (ICA) at 6 months relative to baseline assessment by US in Group I (p = 0.041) was found.

CONCLUSION: Treatment with PRP injections can reduce pain and improve knee function in patients with various degrees of articular degeneration. Further studies are needed to clarify the anabolic effect of PRP on the articular cartilage.

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