February 13, 2013
1 min read

Patients with knee OA showed improved pain and function scores after PRP treatment

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Researchers from Hospital for Special Surgery found improved pain and function scores for patients with knee osteoarthritis at 1-year follow-up when treated with platelet-rich plasma.

In the study, 22 patients received a 6-mL injection of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for early knee osteoarthritis (OA). Fifteen patients were clinically assessed at baseline, 1 month, 2 months, 3 months, 6 months and 12 months, and also had MRIs taken at 1 year, according to the abstract. In 73% of cases, there was no progression of OA in any knee compartment at 1 year, researchers said.


Hollis G. Potter

One change differentiating this study from others that analyze PRP is the use of MRI, WOMAC, VAS and Activity of Daily Living scores to see the results of the biologic, Hollis G. Potter, MD, chief of the Division of Magnetic Resonance Imaging at Hospital for Special Surgery, said in a press release.

“The problem with a lot of PRP studies is that most people have just used subjective outcome instruments, such as pain and function scores,” Potter stated in the release.

Potter said validated tools help with the patient bias sometimes inserted into studies using patient-reported outcomes.


“When you add MRI assessment, it shows you the status of the disease at that time, regardless of whether the patient is symptomatic or asymptomatic or they have good or poor function in the knee. You find out what the cartilage actually looks like. We can noninvasively assess the matrix or the building blocks of cartilage.”

At 6 months, WOMAC scores improved through a reduction of 41.7% and 55.9% at 1 year. VAS was reduced by 56.2% at 6 months and 58.9% at 1 year, while Activity of Daily Living Scores significantly increased to 46.8% at 6 months and 55.7% at 1 year.


Halpern B. Clin J Sport Med. 2012;doi:10.1097/JSM.0b013e31827c3846.

Disclosure: One of the authors (Halpern) is a minority stock owner in IV Health Care Neostem. Potter has no relevant financial disclosures.