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U of U Well being Doctor Seeks Volunteers for Examine of Low-Value Knee Arthritis Therapy | College of Utah Well being

Tor study extra and be screened for enrollment, please name 801-213-1425 or electronic mail Luke Johnson, u0924907@utah.edu.

Osteoarthritis is without doubt one of the main causes of continual knee ache, affecting no less than 19% of Individuals aged 45 or older and as many as 50% of these of their 80s, in keeping with Dan Cushman, M.D., an affiliate professor of sports activities medication within the Division of Bodily Medication & Rehabilitation on the Spencer Fox Eccles College of Medication on the College of Utah.

Train, bodily remedy, and weight reduction can assist relieve the signs. Cortisone injections are one of the crucial efficient momentary drug therapies for the situation however can have critical negative effects reminiscent of cartilage injury, hypertension, and elevated blood sugar ranges.

However sooner or later, cortisone is likely to be used much less usually to deal with knee osteoarthritis, says Cushman, who’s recruiting volunteers for a research of a low-cost model of one other promising remedy.

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is a sort of regenerative medication that depends on injections of a affected person’s personal platelets to alleviate knee joint stiffness and ache. Platelets are blood cells that assist type clots. However additionally they comprise proteins known as progress elements that may assist heal accidents and relieve ache. As a result of the platelets are derived from a affected person’s personal blood, there’s seemingly a decrease threat of hostile negative effects, Cushman says.

Research counsel that PRP is simply as efficient as cortisone injections, and its results last more, doubtlessly requiring new injections each six months in comparison with each two to 3 months for cortisone.

However there is a catch. Most docs should depend on industrial PRP kits to extract platelet-rich plasma from a affected person’s blood. Few insurance coverage firms cowl the process, and physicians usually cost greater than $700 for every injection, making it cost-prohibitive for a lot of sufferers.

In an effort to deal with this downside, Cushman and his colleagues have developed a low-cost, easy-to-replicate PRP preparation approach that physicians can do in their very own places of work.

“Our course of is principally the identical because the industrial ones, however we do it manually utilizing a centrifuge and some available, cheap provides to separate plasma and platelets from different blood elements,” Cushman says. “We extract simply as a lot PRP from the blood, and it solely takes a few minutes extra to do than with the industrial kits.”

The simplified course of may scale back the price of PRP injections considerably, maybe as little as $10 per shot, making it extra attractive for insurance coverage firms to cowl the process, Cushman says.

To check its viability, Cushman is recruiting 30 volunteers with gentle to average knee osteoarthritis to take part in a small-scale trial. volunteers will obtain two PRP injections, one at the start of the research and one other three weeks later. The injections might be freed from cost.

Contributors might be adopted for one 12 months after the second injection and requested to fill out questionnaires at common intervals about their ranges of exercise and discomfort.

The research is supported by the Basis for Bodily Medical and Rehabilitation and the Division of Bodily Medication & Rehabilitation at College of Utah.

“Our final aim is to determine remedy choices for painful musculoskeletal circumstances for all sufferers, not simply those that can afford it with out insurance coverage protection,” Cushman says. “This research will hopefully present {that a} comparatively easy process can present long-lasting, lower-risk remedy with out the necessity for medicines.”

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