Is Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy effective?

Kobe Bryant underwent plasma therapy to lengthen his NBA career.

Kobe Bryant has played 1,459 playoff games in the NBA when you add up both regular season and playoff matches. This has put a tremendous amount of stress on his knees, and after the 2010-2011 season, it looked as if Bryant might have to retire, or significantly curtail his on-court minutes.

Instead, Bryant sought out a special kind of treatment for ailing joints and ligament injuries called Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy (PRP), which has become popular in recent years among professional athletes, from golfer Tiger Woods to NFL player Hines Ward.

With PRP, a doctor draws a small vial of blood from the patient and spins it in a centrifuge, which separates out the platelet-rich plasma that helps heal tissue. The plasma is then injected into the affected area, reportedly resulting in faster healing time without the need for invasive surgery.

While it's hard to argue with the fact that Bryant and Woods have both emerged from their injuries as the best players in their respective games, there is some question as to the effectiveness of PRP. Currently, there is little long-term research available to show whether it works or not, so doctors haven't reached a consensus as to whether it should be recommended to patients.

PRP does show some promise, and it will be interesting to see if further research can illuminate some of its mystery. But you don't need to resort to experimental techniques and methods to slow the effects of aging and stress. If you're concerned that your body is advancing faster than you'd like it to, we recommend contacting an anti aging doctor at Longevity Centres of America, where we can discuss possible treatments and procedures that can reinvigorate your body and mind.