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PRP injection, for rotator cuff tear.. giving it a try!

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by marknkidz, Aug 10, 2018.

  1. marknkidz

    marknkidz Formula 3
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    Oct 7, 2004
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    Back story... I had torn my rotator cuff in 2014, had the usual surgery, consisting of Anchors etc.
    Shoulder never felt 100% fixed, but figured that's the nature of the beast... Im a pretty active mid 50 guy, who golfs once every couple weeks, and lifts weight 3 days a week (all machines, no bench).. and does Cardio the other 4 days... again... pretty active.

    Fast forward to about a month ago.. Shoulder was really starting to feel sore, not as bad as it did when i had my first surgery (then i couldnt lift hand over head, comb hair, pull up pants)... this time, I could lift hand over head etc.. just felt pain, and a lack of strength....so went in for another MRI.

    WELL...... small full thickness tear!!! ugh!! of the supraspinatus tendon about 14mm...

    Dreading the idea of Surgery and re-hab again!! I looked into PRP injections.. and there was/is so much conflicting reports as too what it will and wont do.. as far as healing tears...

    I felt it was worth a try.. I had my injection (about 7 total) on Monday the 6th.. will keep posting on this thread from time to time.. the results. Good or Bad.

    the initial shot wasn't as bad as I thought.. they take 10 tubes of blood spin them 2 sep. times to harvest the PRP, then injected my shoulder all around the injured area using ultrasound for guidance.. First couple injections were like a normal shot, then after that, the 3-7 must of hit the spot as I felt quite a bit of discomfort and you could feel the pain all along the spot where I was feeling the injury.. felt like a dentist hitting a nerve.

    the rest of day, shoulder was basically useless, completely tight and sore... day 2 was much better, could lift arm waist high, still quite a bit of discomfort/pain. And by day 3 could lift above head with a bit of pain.

    Today is day 5, I feel almost like I did before going in for injection... WEEK 2-4 will be the determining factor and I should start feeling some relief. If I do.. I will go for 2nd injection on week 6-7. If I get ZERO relief, ill chalk it up to a "it was worth a try" and explore surgical option.

    feel free to PM me if ya have any questions..
     
  2. docf

    docf Formula Junior

    Sep 14, 2008
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    Gary
    Personally hate to tell you PRP is pretty much a waste of money for now! Expensive and poor outcomes. Rotor cuff tears are notorious for poor healing through and through. That doesn't mean no relief of pain or improvement of ROM. Just recurrent rupture due to poor or no healing as mentioned. To let you know there is a new patch tech. using cadaver muscle tissue. Most are feeling better at 6 weeks, out of splint @ 6weeks Still obviously ROM excises, strengthening etc. This as mentioned is ,promising. Must find someone trained in the procedure. Must qualify for the procedure as to amt damage etc.This is done outpatient by scope. You go home after the procedure.
    Looks like possibly something really new in a year or so that will involve a balloon type insert that will be inserted under the AC joint area. Design to reduce inflam. thus reduce pain, no trauma. Other cuff muscles to take over for the torn RC.
    Currently am contemplating patch procedure for my wife soon.
     
  3. marknkidz

    marknkidz Formula 3
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    2 week update....

    well the shoulder pain is still there.. not as bad as pre injection. Hard to discern if the improvement is from the treatment or the fact ive done NO weight lifting.. Golf... or anything physical since injections as instructed.
    According to Dr. weeks 2-4 will show if the procedure is going to work, as that is the time frame for most improvement.. lifted weights for first time yesterday, today.. still feel OK, not perfect and not pain free.. still feel something amiss... time will tell.

    will post update in 4 weeks... fingers crossed!

    docf---- I hear ya!! would love to hear more from you via PM on what ya decided for your wife, via the patch procedure.
     
  4. rdefabri

    rdefabri Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Jun 4, 2008
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    As someone that ruptured his distal bicep tendon at 44 years old, recognize that tendon damage is partially age related. Years of use and abuse makes them weaker.

    Precisely why I no longer move heavy weights when I lift - not worth the risk and there’s plenty of research and evidence that proves light weight / more reps will yield similar results.

    Hope you feel better - good luck with whatever you try to do!!
     
  5. marknkidz

    marknkidz Formula 3
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    update.... its been 1 week since my 2nd round of injections.

    I did feel quite a bit of relief from the first round of injections... otherwise I never would of put myself thur the pain of 2nd round, and cost. And it does HURT!!

    I will say the 2nd round of injection, initially hurt WAY more than first, but the day after, it felt a lot less pain than first round. (weird).

    the gain from 1st round was about 50% better on back part of shoulder, and about 20% gain on front portion. I passed that along to my DR. and proceeded TO NAIL the front part on 2nd set of injections. Time will tell, but so far im very happy with the results

    in approx. 12 weeks I will do another MRI and have them compared to pre injection MRI. I was told by my primary, not to put a lot of faith in the comparisons, as machines very as well as reading radiologists.. so minimal diff may not be seen. But he did say, if there is significant improvement it would be able to be seen. As with anything, best to go by how ya feel.

    I have decided at this point whatever the MRI outcome is.... NO SURGERY. Already went thru that once. As of now, I do have GOOD range of motion, and very little pain. And, ive accepted the fact my GYM routine is forever changed, and the loss of strength on that side is something im just gonna deal with...and im ok with that!
     
  6. Brant Jurgens

    Brant Jurgens Rookie

    Feb 10, 2019
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    akrider1978
    marknkidz, any update on your PRP treatment results?
     
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  7. marknkidz

    marknkidz Formula 3
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    Sorry..just saw this. YES!!!

    had a THIRD and final set of injections about 4 weeks ago. DR. wasn't even going to do it, as my range of motion is approx. 95% my good shoulder. Basically no pain at all now, can sleep thru the night even on bad shoulder (prior to injections, if I laid on bad shoulder, id light up like a fire cracker after 3-5 min.)

    Strength is coming back as well.. but im NOT pushing it at the gym, still lifting weights, just not as heavy. I guess at 55 that ship has sailed! but ZERO pain when lifting.

    my primary DR. is amazed! said getting another MRI is throwing money away, he can see from examining me, the progress...
     
  8. flifer

    flifer Karting

    Mar 3, 2016
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    Mike
    +1000000

    This may almost sound fake, but I've had shoulder and knee injuries repaired in similar fashion with prolotherapy, which is very similar to PRP injections just a different "formula".

    My wife had her rotator cuff repaired by 3 rounds of prolotherapy using PRP injections on the first 2 rounds. They did traditional prolotherapy without PRP on her last round because the rotator cuff tear was no longer visible on the ultrasound. Finding a doc who uses an ultrasound along with or before their injections is helpful for successful treatment as less guesswork is involved.

    Based on our results I took in my elderly mom in for prolotherapy on both her knees. This was a life saver for her... After 4 rounds of prolotherapy(with the first round being PRP) she had zero knee pain, words can not describe how much of a positive impact this had on the quality of her life.

    I had a similar failed shoulder surgery as OP back in 2001. Only my shoulder started to dislocate again 2 years after my shoulder repair surgery...

    In 2003 when I first had prolotherapy on my shoulder it was considered complete total quackery and based on phony science as there was much less information out there than there is today. It was kind of scary for me to try it, I don't consider myself an "alternative treatment" kind of guy. I almost didn't go forward with it.

    Really glad I did it though... My ortho was just going to perform the same surgery to try and fix it. I have not had one dislocation since completing injections.
     
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  9. Apex IX

    Apex IX Rookie

    Jan 19, 2009
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    #9 Apex IX, Apr 8, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2019
    Hey guys, I'm in the same boat as you guys ,57 years old up to this injury fairly active. . I just had an mri with contrast and have ben diagnosed with a partial tear of the supraspinatus tendon in the right shoulder. The orthopedic surgeon thought it was more of a gradual tear from age and wear, he said he sees a lot of 50's and 60's with this condition. He compared it to a rope that is fraying, he did say something that scared me, he said I need to be careful or it will could tear away from the bone. He gave me a cortisteroid shot and sent me on my way, the shoulder feels so much better now but I'm so scared to even lift anything with it and treat it like a gimp shoulder. I guess the consensus on partial tears is not to do anything unless it becomes at least 70% torn.

    I should of asked, if I can lift light weights and do a higher rep count to fatigue the muscles of the upper body, staying away from overhead pressing, overhead swinging movements, and stay away from exercises that put to much tension on that rotator cuff tendon/muscle. It seems that avoiding upper body exercises for the next 23 years isn't gonna do my health a bit of good. Can building surrounding muscles around the tear compensate for the injury?

    Any comments with how you guys deal with it would be appreciated.

    BTW Marknkidz I hope everything is getting better for you.
     
  10. marknkidz

    marknkidz Formula 3
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    APEX IX....

    I cant stress enough.. that if I were you I would 100% get a PRP injections!! may be 2 rounds of it. I have ZERO to gain from telling you this, other than my shoulder is 90-95% better! I can literally do anything and everything.. golf, no issues.. but foremost sleeping!! prior to shots if I laid on the bad shoulder, within 2 minutes the pain would be so bad I had to roll back over. Now I can sleep on either side with no issues. Is it perfecta? NO, im still super careful how much I lift at gym, im cognizant of any lifting I do at home.. I don't have any pain, but understand mid 50's and don't want to do anything to re-aggravate it!

    ill be going back once a year for maintenance injection on BOTH shoulders, I believe in it that much!! see too many guys our age walking around in the tell tale sling that indicates rotator cuff surgery!!

    good luck, I hope for the best for ya... shoulder injuries suck!!
     
  11. Apex IX

    Apex IX Rookie

    Jan 19, 2009
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    Marknkidz,

    Thankyou for the reply, I am soo glad that your shoulder feels a lot better. I will definitely look into this PRP treatment. In your research was there any negatives to PRP injection. It seems that since it's your own blood that they are reinjecting into you that it would be a pretty safe treatment with little downside if it doesn't work, other than the monetary loss of the treatment.

    He is a well respected shoulder specialist in the area that has really high reviews, and I'm sure that he gave me his best advice for what he does which is surgery. But it just seems that leaving something torn which is compromised to further tear until it fully tears doesn't leave me with a warm and fuzzy feeling.

    He did say that one thing that he would do if he went in is that he would let the area bleed so that it could help heal the tendon which is basically what PRP treatments do. Maybe at least the remaining tendon will grow in size and strength and fill in the tear with new growth.

    Thanks again hopefully it's helps me the way that it helped you.
     

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