During the lively energy of a busy northern Michigan summer, you often find yourself caught up in a whirlwind of activities.
From the crack of the pickleball paddle—to the swing of a golf club—and even the harsh clash of a tennis ball, you immerse yourself in the thrill of each game.
You reunite with the guys you haven’t seen in a while, and a gentle breeze sweeps in from Lake Michigan. This gentle breeze carries a sense of excitement for the months ahead.
The thrill of the game boosts your confidence and keeps your ego soaring. The game is more than just your healthy habit—it’s a chance for you to engage in physical activity, while also enjoying social time with your friends.
But once the game starts, you begin to experience a continuous ache in your joints. You are constantly enduring knee pain and a dull ache that consumes you with each step.
When you reach for that perfect pickleball shot, a sharp twinge shoots through your elbow, interrupting the flow and leaving you frustrated. Even the gentlest movement in your wrists and hands, triggers discomfort that lingers long after the final stroke.
Are you becoming sidelined by your joint pain?
In northern Michigan at RegenCen, there’s a groundbreaking solution that can help you reclaim your active lifestyle.
It’s time to leave your joint pain behind and rediscover the joy of effortless movement with Platelet-Rich Fibrin (PRF). This revolutionary therapy can help you move freely this summer (and all year long!) without joint pain.
Now, what exactly is happening to my joints?
What happens to joints as we age?
As you age, your joints undergo significant changes that can impact their function. These changes have the power to influence how your joints work and feel, which can lead to shaping your physical well-being.
However— it is normal for your joints to feel different with age. Your joints might hurt more, feel stiff, or not move as easily as before. With regenerative medicine, there are treatments you can do to take care of your joints and keep them healthy as you age.
Wear and Tear from Activities in Youth
Over time, your joints endure stress and strain from the activities you engaged in during your youth. The activities you once loved, like high school sports or hiking, put stress on our joints over time. This wear and tear can lead to joint pain and discomfort as you get older.
Natural Aging Process
Another change happens naturally as we grow older. Our joints start to go through a process called degeneration (the gradual breakdown of structures or functions within the body). This means that the important parts of our joints, like the collagen and repair functions, start to wear down. As a result, you may experience joint pain, stiffness, and find it harder to move around like you used to.
What are the common areas where joint pain occurs?
When it comes to joint pain, there are specific areas of the body that often experience discomfort more than others. Common areas include the knees, elbows, wrists, and hands.
Your knees are prone to pain and can greatly impact your mobility. Knee pain can stem from various causes, including injuries to the meniscus, ligaments, or cartilage. This pain might feel like a sharp or dull ache, making it difficult to walk or engage in activities such as pickleball.
Your elbows can cause significant discomfort as well. The term tennis elbow, also called lateral epicondylitis, is often associated with repetitive motions, such as the swings and movements made in sports like tennis. If you experience pain on the outer part of your elbow, especially when gripping objects, you may be dealing with tennis elbow.
Wrists and Hands
Lastly, your wrists and hands can also be susceptible to pain, especially from stress injuries. Repetitive tasks like prolonged computer work or frequent swinging of a golf club can lead to wrist and hand pain. You might feel aching, stiffness, or even sharp twinges in these areas, making it challenging to perform everyday activities and even your golf swing.
PRF vs PRP – What’s the Difference?
Understanding the difference between PRF (Platelet-Rich Fibrin) and PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) therapy is important when considering treatment. Although both therapies use platelets, they have distinct characteristics.
PRF is a product of your own blood – we draw your blood and separate the platelets and fibrin in a centrifuge at RegenCen. The platelets are full of growth factors and other cell-stimulating proteins.
The platelets of PRF (the second generation PRP) have a thicker consistency compared to PRP, which allows it to stay in the injected area for a longer time. This prolonged presence promotes better healing and regeneration of tissues.
Where PRP has a tendency to spread once injected, potentially limiting its effectiveness in targeting specific areas that require treatment.
One unique advantage of PRF is its stickiness. This property helps PRF adhere to the intended site, providing sustained release of growth factors and other healing substances. This enhanced retention can contribute to improved outcomes and a more efficient healing process.
PRF and Stem Cell Therapy
When it comes to PRF (Platelet-Rich Fibrin) and stem cell therapy, it’s important to understand that they’re different approaches, with their own unique characteristics.
PRF utilizes your own blood components (including platelets and growth factors), which are then concentrated and used for treatment. Stem cells are harvested from fat or bone marrow using invasive processes such as liposuction or bone marrow aspiration.
Many early regenerative orthopedic research studies focused on stem cells, but over time, platelet products such as PRP and PRF were shown to have equally positive results, with much lower cost and risk.
There are still disagreements as to which is more effective, but everyone agrees PRF is easier on the patient and far less costly.
PRF as an Alternative to Steroid Injections
If you’re experiencing joint pain, PRF offers an exciting alternative to steroid injections. Unlike steroids that need to be continuously used, PRF provides a natural solution derived from your own blood. This means that your body’s own healing powers are harnessed to alleviate pain and promote recovery.
PRF avoids the potential side effects that can come with long-term steroid use, offering a safer and more natural approach to managing your joint discomfort.
Dr. Gustav Lo, Founder and Medical Director of RegenCen, explains the remarkable benefits of PRF: “PRF actually builds new cartilage in joints and repairs tendinitis with new tissue, which pills and steroids can’t do. It’s true tissue regeneration.”
With PRF, your body’s ability to heal itself is enhanced, resulting in the restoration of damaged tissues and the alleviation of joint pain.
What common conditions are treated with PRF?
PRF therapy is a powerful treatment option for a range of common conditions, which can include arthritis and joint pain. With PRF injections, you can experience relief from discomforts like tennis elbow and knee pain, allowing you to regain your active lifestyle.
RegenCen in Petoskey and Traverse City, Michigan, specializes in regenerative PRF injections that can effectively address overuse injuries such as tendinitis, arthritis, and plantar fasciitis, which often hinder active adults from staying competitive and fit.
Dr. Lo acknowledges the rising prevalence of injuries from popular sports like pickleball, stating, “Five years ago, pickleball wasn’t even something on the radar, but now injuries from it are common. PRF is a great solution.”
Unlike cortisone shots, which only provide temporary relief, PRF works by reactivating dormant cells in joints and tendons. It recruits stem cells to the injured area, stimulating the natural healing process.
Research has shown that PRF is as effective as steroids in relieving pain and offers longer-lasting results.
PRF has been shown to be effective for:
- Arthritis in all major joints
- Rotator cuff injuries
- Plantar fasciitis
Imagine a life without joint pain. You can say goodbye to joint discomfort and regain your mobility.
Picture yourself gracefully running across the pickleball court, or effortlessly swinging your golf club without the burden of joint pain.
With PRF at RegenCen, you can embrace your actives, knowing that your joints are revitalized and ready for action.
If you’re ready to move how you want this summer, consider PRF therapy. Our PRF treatment is known as the Mobility Shot. Learn more about the Mobility Shot and how it can benefit you by texting or calling 231.347.7395 or booking your complimentary consultation online.