Avera Medical Minute ASH: Patient finds relief with PRP Injections after 30 years of Achilles pain

By  | 

Mike Hall endured decades of pain in his Achilles tendon and was told he needed surgery.

“Yeah I postponed that. I thought that was pretty invasive,” said Hall.

It was while watching an Avera Medical Minute with podiatrist Dr. Terence Pedersen in 2015 about PRP injections that Hall wondered if this could work for him. So, he made an appointment with Dr. Pedersen in Yankton.

“I’m 60. I’m planning for the last chapter. I’m hoping from 60 to 80 that maybe I’ll have some good years. And this is what I told Dr. Pedersen -- I said, ‘I just want those to be the most beneficial years possible. If you can get me something now that’ll make those 20 years, next 20 years, go by pretty good then wouldn’t that be a good investment on my part,’” said Hall.

“And one shot took care of all his pain,” said Dr. Hall.

30 years of pain, gone with PRP injections.

“They take your blood, they spin it and then they reinject it into damaged areas,” said Hall.

“That stands for Platelet Rich Plasma, and the platelets are filled with proteins and healing factors. So we can draw blood out of the patients arm. We spin it down in the centrifuge and it concentrates. And then we skim off the layer of platelets that has PRP or platelet rich plasma, and then you numb up the area you want to inject -- say the Achilles tendon -- and then you inject that right into the tissue, right into the tendon itself. So you get a concentrated dose of healing factors right where the problem is,” said Dr. Pedersen.

The PRP injections are done right in the office.

“We usually, if we do an Achilles tendon, we put them in a boot for about a month because we want that tissue to heal. We don’t want it to be irritated, and the shot will generally make it hurt a little bit more for the first few days and then it gets better and better from there,” said Dr. Pedersen.

“I needed this moment to kind of reflect on it because I’ve gotten used to feeling so good that I had to go back in time and remember when I didn’t feel good. I was very pleased with it -- non-invasive, non-surgical and it seems to be working,” said Hall.

Dr. Pedersen says PRP injections have really caught on in the past few years with athletes because it gets them back on the field sooner without surgery.

For more information, just call 877-AT-AVERA.