call us
888-473-2648

1990 Main Street Suite 700
Sarasota, FL 34236
941-952-3300

Prp Treatment

On The Mend – PRP Treatment Extends Ballplayer’s Career

Every day we read about big-name sports stars who receive non-surgical treatment in the form of PRP treatments. Last week Los Angeles Laker superstar Kobe Bryant received his annual injection, and his performance on the basketball court is certainly among the best in NBA history.

Sometimes an athlete who is above the average age of those he plays and competes with suffers an injury, and surgery might mean an end to their career. Such a story was recently published by the Connecticut Post, about a baseball player with an elbow injury who was sent down to the minor leagues to mend. For this player, PRP treatment may mean his professional career will go on:

Joe+Mather+Los+Angeles+Dodgers+v+Chicago+Cubs+YcW65P4JqqLlOutfielder Joe Mather thought that he might have played the final game of his career. He suffered a tear in the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow.

It’s an injury that is often remedied by Tommy John surgery, which would have sidelined Mather for seven to 12 months. At the age of 32, he knew there was no guarantee that he could have returned for a 15th season.

However, that is not a decision Mather will have to make right now. He received a platelet-rich plasma injection in early July, and again finds himself on the active roster with the Bluefish.

“It was scary at first,” Mather said. “I thought it was going to be (Tommy John surgery). So I was pretty pleased that they had an alternative. That kind of took some weight off my shoulders. It’s still a little tentative just because I don’t know if this is going to stick, but so far it’s been good.” Full Story at CTPost.com

Dr. Jon Greco of the Greco Medical Group in Sarasota Florida has for many years been a pioneer in the field of regenerative medicine and PRP treatments. He has had remarkable success helping athletes and non-athletes avoid costly and painful surgeries with breakthrough technologies that restore healthy joints, tendons, and ligaments.

Dr. Greco uses PRP technology to successfully treat tennis elbow, rotator cuff tears, patellar tendonitis, hip tendonitis and more injuries and aches for weekend warriors and anyone who suffers from chronic pain. Dr. Greco can be reached at 941-952-3300.

 

On The Mend – PRP Treatment Extends Ballplayer’s C...

Proof That PRP Heals

There’s new evidence that not only does platelet rich plasma, PRP, improve pain and function in chronic tendon injuries but actually HEALS them. In the May issue of the American Journal of Sports Medicine a study was done on 28 athletes with one of the most common overuse injury knee problem, chronic patellar tendonopathy, also known as Jumper’s Knee. It is characterized by pain and swelling below the kneecap.
100% of the athletes improved. By 3 months, 75% returned to their presymptom sporting levels and maintained that for 2 years with nonsurgical PRP. Not only did their pain go away, but their tendons returned to normal as shown on follow-up MRI’s. 7 subjects were considered treatment failures yet 6 of them still showed partial healing of their tendons by MRI. The article cites prior surgical success rates at somewhere between 46% and 70%.


To be included in the study the athletes had to have the problem at least 4 months (mean of 18 months and range 4-60 months). They had the worst case scenarios and had to fail all nonsurgical treatments such as rest, nonsteroidal anti-inflamatory drugs, physical therapy, peritendon steroid injections, laser therapy, and extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT). The subjects received 3 platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections under ultrasound guidance and were followed by MRI scan to evaluate healing of the tendon.
With our purified and proprietary for of PRP, Cytokine Rich Plasma (CRP), we at Greco Medical Group can also treat similar tendon/ligament injuries like rotator cuff tears, tennis elbow, IT band syndrome, hip tendonitis and bursitis, and ankle injuries to name a few. CRP works even better for osteoarthritis of the knee to prevent knee replacement surgery. Call us at 941-952-3300 or do a free on-line consult athttp://kneepainflorida.com/orthobiologic-remote-consultation/

knee pain florida

 

Proof That PRP Heals

Personalized Medicine

Personalized Medicine for Astronauts, Soccer Players, and YOU.

AstronautWhat does personalized medicine for an astronaut in outer space have to do with a soccer star playing in the heart of the Amazon?  Both space and the Amazon jungle are two of the most extreme environments humans have chosen to explore.  As I was watching the early matches of the 2014 FIFA World Cup it was quite obvious that the teams from more temperate climates were having muscle and tendon injuries and electrolyte issues.  I was especially distressed by USA’s Jozy Altidore’s hamstring injury that has probably eliminated him from further play in the tournament.  Here are athletes in the prime of their life, in peak physical condition, with some the best sports medicine doctors and trainers, and they are still having problems.  We continue to push human performance under extreme conditions.  Can we do better?  Even a 1% improvement can make the difference between the “thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.”

Recently I spoke with Michael Schmidt, PhD who co-authored the article “Personalized medicine in human space flight: using Omics based analyses to develop individualized countermeasures that enhance astronaut safety and performance”.  It isn’t light reading, even for a medical doctor like myself.  Essentially the authors are saying that we are emerging into a new era of personalized medicine that takes into account the differences in our physiology and individually tailors our medical treatments.  This Soccer Playernew paradigm is especially important in extreme conditions as space flight or even playing soccer in the Amazon. Obviously I am more concerned about medicine than sports, but professional and collegiate sports are billion dollar industries providing entertainment, jobs, and education.  What are the practical applications of personalized medicine for professional athletes as well as everyday people?

In the new field of Regenerative Medicine, we utilize Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) derived from the patient’s own blood.  We isolate and concentrate messengers (growth factors and cytokines) from each individual patient’s  blood.  These messengers work with our own stem cells and regenerative cells to expedite healing.  For example, Cristiano Ronaldo, arguably the best professional soccer forward in the world, has a patellar tendon injury that may be interfering with his play in the World Cup.  Greg Simony, an extreme triathlete who swims, bikes, and runs with disabled athletes for the Care2Tri charity (www.care2tri.org) had the same injury.  This injury usually takes months to get better with the standard therapy of rest, ice, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications. I injected him with Cytokine Rich Plasma (CRP), our own purified and proprietary form of PRP.   Three weeks later he ran a full marathon.  Rich Lomas, another local runner and fundraiser for the Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation (www.phsf.org), has been suffering for the past 2 years with osteoarthritis, cartilage tears of both knees, and recurring back pain from lifting his disabled son.  With the help of CRP injections and his orthopedic surgeon, Rich is running again and training for the Boston Marathon.  The most exciting use for CRP is to postpone or prevent knee replacement surgery.  We have many patients whose knees are “bone-on-bone” and were told over 5 years ago they needed knee replacements.  Today they are pain free and mobile without prosthetic knees.

For more information about any of these treatments or a free on-line consultation, please go to www.kneepainflorida.com or call 941-952-3300.

 

Personalized Medicine

All That is Gold Does Not Glitter

image001

All Platelet Rich Plasma is not created equal.

Regenerative Medicine has been catching on in the last few years with the increased use of Platelet Rich Plasma, PRP. With PRP we can use messengers (growth factors and cytokines that are present on the platelets of our own blood) that tell our own stem cells and regenerative cells to go to work. These messengers initiate healing and treat pain in arthritis, ligament and tendon injuries, chronic neck and back conditions, to name a few. But there are so many forms of PRP and not all are good and effective.

So how can patients know they are getting the best form of PRP? Ask the physician:

1. Is the PRP system FDA approved?

-FDA systems are closed, which means they are less likely to be contaminated
-FDA systems must do what they claim to do. i.e. produce adequete levels of growth factors and cytokines

2. How much blood will be taken?

-if less than 60 cc or ml are taken the PRP isn’t concentrated enough to optimize efficacy

3. What color will the PRP be?

A: Dark red PRP has cells and cellular debris in it that can temporarily cause a lot of pain and swelling if injected into a joint. Red is OK almost anywhere else. Gold is usually better if is concentrated

4. What is the concentration of the growth factors and cytokines?

A: Greater than at least 4 times baseline should be the minimum regardless of whether the PRP is red or gold

5. Do you use a matrix?

A: Matrix is a biologic scaffold that holds the growth factors and cytokines in place so they have the can be used to their maximal benefit. The longer these messengers stay in the damaged area the more time they can call the other regenerative cells to where they are needed to start the healing process.
– the matrix structure itself is anti-inflamatory which can decrease pain tremendously

6. Do you add any medications to the PRP?

A: Some doctors may add cortisone, human growth hormone, and hyaluronic acid (Euflexxa, Hyalgan, Orthovisc, Supartz, Synvisc, rooster combs)
Patients should also be aware that PRP treatments are also being heralded as “stem cell” treatments. This is misleading, if not downright false. If the physician is not sticking a large needle into your hip or doing a mini-liposuction, you are not getting stem cell treatments. The most important point is that about 90% of the time if a high quality PRP treatment is used, true stem cell treatments aren’t required.

In summary, you want at least 60 cc’s of blood taken, concentrated to at least 4 times baseline, preferably gold, with a matrix, no medication added, and processed in an FDA approved system.

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.

J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

 

All That is Gold Does Not Glitter

CRP Treatments – Keep Your Own Hardware!

keepHardware

If the human body is nothing short of miraculous, then why is it so hard to believe that the answers to many of our medical problems are already within our own body?  Unfortunately we take the healing power of our body for granted until we are sick or falling apart from the passage of time.  We have come to rely on medicines and surgery to fix everything.  Yes the advances in medicine in the last hundred years have been fantastic but they still pale in comparison to the complexity and marvelous nature of our body’s own healing and self-regenerating capacity.

We are now on the cusp of changing this current paradigm.  Isn’t it much better to take care of, fix, and hold onto the amazing body we already have been given?  Isn’t it best to look inside us at our own fantastic repair and regenerative capabilities? There is hope in the emerging field of Regenerative Medicine.  According to the National Institute of Health,  “Regenerative medicine is the process of creating living, functional tissues to repair or replace tissue or organ function lost due to age, disease, damage, or congenital defects. This field holds the promise of regenerating damaged tissues and organs in the body by stimulating previously irreparable organs to heal themselves.”  The most exciting and promising treatments for the future will be non-fetal or non-embryonic stem cells for growing new tissues and organs.

So what can Regenerative Medicine do for us now?  We can use messengers that tell our own stem cells and regenerative cells to go to work.  We have stem cells for almost ever tissue in our body, for example stem cells for skin, stem cells for bone and cartilage.  The messengers that stimulate our own stem cells are in the form of growth factors and cytokines that are present on the platelets of our own blood.  We can isolate them, concentrate them, and inject them under ultrasound guidance to where they are needed most.   This Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) has been used for almost 3 decades in dentistry, cardiothoracic surgery, and orthopedics. Not all forms of PRP are alike and not all forms of PRP give great results.  At Greco Medical Group (GMG) we use an advanced, purified, and proprietary form of PRP called Cytokine Rich Plasma (CRP).  It is all-natural, made by you, for you.  No drugs are needed.

Greco Medical Group uses CRP for arthritis, chronic pain, and sports injuries.  But some of the best results with CRP are with knee pain treatment for Osteoarthritis (OA).  OA of the knee is a progressive condition that wears away the smooth cartilage cushion in the joint.  Like almost everything else in our body, the cartilage is constantly being broken down and rebuilt.  Unfortunately in OA the cartilage is being broken down faster than it is being rebuilt.  Early in the disease process, the OA patient may just describe their knees as feeling tight and stiff.  As OA progresses, there is pain, inflammation, and destruction of the joint.  As time goes on, they may only feel pain after excessive activity.  Then the treatment is rest, ice, and acetaminophen.   Acetaminophen is a very safe and effective medicine if taken correctly.  As OA progresses the pain gets worse, more frequent, and occurs with less activity.  Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s) such as over the counter Advil and Aleve or prescription drugs such as meloxicam are usually the next step. This is where it gets scary.  Did you know that in 1998 The American Journal of Medicine stated: “Conservative calculations estimate that approximately 107,000 patients are hospitalized annually for non steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)-related gastrointestinal (GI) complications and at least 16,500 NSAID-related deaths occur each year among arthritis patients alone.”

Time and OA march on leading to more pain, more joint destruction, and consequently less mobility.  At this point, OA patients are forced to cut back their activities and exercise.  This downward spiral continues with weight gain, de-conditioning, and possibly diabetes.  All of these can make OA worse.  What’s next?  The present standard of care is steroid and hyaluronic acid shots (Synvisc, Hyalgan, Orthovisc).  Steroids are a temporary fix and can be harmful to the knee cartilage. Hyaluronic acid can help in the short term and in a limited number of people.  Typically, narcotics are prescribed for pain management until the patient is ready for surgery or if they aren’t candidates for surgery.  Narcotics can cause constipation, impaired mental status, impaired driving and addiction. The most important point about knee pain treatment for OA is that none of these treatments change the course of OA and eventually there is no other option but knee replacement surgery.  Many things influence how fast this occurs such as body weight, family history of OA, diabetes, and prior surgery or trauma to the knee.

We believe now with the use of CRP we can change the course of Osteoarthritis. We can offer an alternative to knee replacement.  Two goals for treating OA of the knee are to decrease or eliminate knee pain and maintain mobility.  We don’t just mask the pain.  We eliminate the pain by cooling down the inflammation and actually initiating and accelerating the healing process. About 90% of the patients that we treat with OA of the knees are successfully treated with CRP.  The younger the patient and the earlier the stage of OA, the better the results with CRP, however, we have many patients in their 80’s who have done well. The ultimate goal is to avoid knee surgery and keep your own joints (hardware) by growing new cartilage.   At GMG we believe we can accomplish all these goals with CRP treatments.  Talk is cheap but all one has to do is listen to our patients.  We have numerous patients who were told by their orthopedic knee specialist they needed knee replacement surgery because their knees were “bone-on-bone.”  Five years later after using our CRP treatments these patients continue to be pain-free and active with their own knees.  Even if we are just prolonging the time until surgery is needed, technology in regenerative medicine and prosthetic joints will probably advance tremendously in that time. We are already making great strides with fat transfers and bone marrow aspirations, which contain an abundance of stem cells.  The FDA currently doesn’t allow true stem cell treatments in the United States but research continues and the future is very bright in Regenerative Medicine.  At Greco Medical Group we aren’t sitting around watching and waiting for things to happen, we are making it happen.

“An ounce of practice is generally worth more than a ton of theory.”
– E.F. Schumacher –

Greco

 

CRP Treatments – Keep Your Own Hardware!

BEYOND PRP: THE NEXT GENERATION

In the past few years many physicians have started to use Platelet Rich Plasma, PRP.  Greco Medical Group can honestly say they have been using Orthobiologics like Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) for the past 15 years, whether it was intraoperatively in orthopedic surgery or cardiothoracic surgery. Then 6 years ago, as part of a biotech company, OroGen BioSciences, they developed the purified form of PRP that no one else is using.  It is called Cytokine Rich Plasma, CRP.

CRP contains the optimal levels of growth factors and cytokines without the pro-inflamatory and pain causing blood cells.

 

pain-prp

CRP has advantages in non-surgical orthopedic injection treatments for tendons, ligament, muscle, and arthritic joints because it does contain optimal levels of growth factors and cytokines, like “Interleukin IL-1ra antagonist”, which has demonstrated in studies and in clinical use.  It is a powerful pain reducer especially in arthritic joint disease.  We have successfully treated shoulders, knees, neck/backs, hands, wrist, elbows, feet and ankles with Ultrasound Guided injections of CRP.

In simpler terms, “it is a purer grade of your own regenerative material (growth factors in plasma proteins) because the cells that are not needed and may cause more inflammation have been filtered out. Therefore, CRP has the advantages of PRP, but we feel “it is more beneficial in tendon, ligament and bone repair as well as more advantageous in cosmetic collagen enhancement, fat-transfer and hair regeneration”.

With CRP we are continuing to advance the science of regenerative medicine not only in orthopedic applications, but also in hair restoration and non-surgicalapplications for bio-enhanced Cosmetics skin rejuvenation and collagen induction.

Our latest breakthrough is the Advanced Protocol.  It combines a fast release and slow release of growth factors and cytokines to get an immediate and sustained response needed in certain conditions.

We have published, lectured, and taught the benefits of Orthobiologics to physicians both nationally and internationally. Greco Medical Group has the experience and technology to help you heal yourself safely and naturally.

 

BEYOND PRP: THE NEXT GENERATION