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Joint Injections - PRP / HA / Steroids

Learn more about Platelet Rich Plasma injection therapy, Hyaluronic acid injections and steroid injections.

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What is a PRP injection?

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections are a type of treatment in which a small amount of concentrated platelets are injected into a specific area of the body. Platelets are a type of blood cell that are involved in the clotting process and also contain growth factors that can stimulate tissue healing.

PRP injections are often used to treat musculoskeletal injuries such as tendonitis, ligament sprains, and muscle strains. They may also be used to treat certain types of chronic pain such as knee osteoarthritis.

PRP injections are typically done in a doctor's office or clinic. The procedure involves drawing a small amount of blood from the patient and then separating the platelets from the other blood cells using a centrifuge. The concentrated platelets are then injected back into the patient at the site of the injury or pain.

PRP injections are generally considered to be safe, with few reported side effects. However, as with any medical procedure, there are risks involved and it's important to discuss these with your doctor before proceeding.

How can PRP injection help the knee joint?

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections may be used to help treat certain conditions that affect the knee joint. The growth factors in PRP can stimulate tissue healing and may help to reduce inflammation, which can in turn help to alleviate pain and improve function and mobility.

PRP injections may be used to treat a variety of conditions that affect the knee, including:

  • Knee osteoarthritis: PRP injections may help to reduce pain and improve function in people with knee osteoarthritis.
  • Patellar / Quads Tendinitis: PRP injections may be used to treat tendinitis, which is degenerative change in the tendon
  • Ligament sprains: PRP injections may be used to help accelerate the healing process in people who have sprained a ligament in their knee.
  • Muscle strains: PRP injections may be used to help speed up recovery in people who have strained a muscle in their knee.

It's important to note that PRP injections are not a cure-all and may not be effective for everyone. The effectiveness of PRP injections can vary and it may take several treatments to see a significant improvement. It's important to discuss the potential benefits and risks of PRP injections with your doctor to determine whether they are a good option for you.

When may you need PRP injections treatment?

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment may be recommended for people with certain conditions that affect the knee joint. PRP treatment may be considered when other treatments, such as medications, physical therapy, or rest, have not been effective in relieving pain or improving function.

  • Knee osteoarthritis: PRP treatment may help to reduce pain and improve function in people with knee osteoarthritis. PRP works best in Grade I-III OA. If the osteoarthritis is grade IV, then there isn’t enough cartilage for PRP to be effective.
  • Patellar / Quads Tendinitis: PRP can help to encourage new blood vessel formation and help healing of the tendon tissue, when coupled with an appropriate physio programme focussed on loading the tendon.

PRP Injection Therapy

Platelet Rich Plasma – or ‘PRP’, as it is more commonly known, isa pioneering biological treatment for musculo-skeletal problems such as sports injuries and osteoarthritis. 

The platelet rich plasma is separated from a blood sample, taken from your arm, by a process called centrifuge which spins the blood at high speeds. For more info, please visit

PRP Works by releasing different growth factors and cytokines, resulting in the healing and preservation of the tissues injected.

PRP Injection Therapy for Osteoarthritis (OA)

Osteoarthritis is a debilitating and progressive condition which is characterised by the slow, painful ongoing destruction of cartilage in the joint, as well as inflammation and damage to the tissues surrounding the joint.There is no cure for osteoarthritis and the treatment currently is aimed at managing the symptoms for as long as possible, which includes weight loss, physiotherapy, exercise and injections such as steroid or hyaluronic acid.

PRP has emerged as a leading joint preservation treatment for OA.There is now lots of evidence to support the use of PRP in OA.

PRP  is highly effective in reducing inflammation and furthermore, helps to slow down and stop the progression of osteoarthritis by down regulating the effect of the MMPs (enzymes that break down cartilage). PRP helps to improve the function of the chondrocytes (cartilage cells) and the production of healthy matrix leading to better cartilage and joint health. 

We aim to reduce the symptoms of osteoarthritis and preserve the cartilage that is remaining in the joint.

PRP injections can be used in the early, mild and moderate stages where evidence supports benefit, however, is not appropriate to have PRP treatment when the joint has severe changes.  

PRP injections have been found to be more effective that hyaluronic acid and steroid injections.

PRP works best in grade I-III. It is not effective in grade IV. Grade IV OA is best treated with surgery. (for more information on this, please see joint replacement surgery)

Hyaluronic Acid Injections

Hyaluronic acid injections are also an effective method of treating knee joint pain and OA. These work by providing a lubricant and cushioning effect in the knee joint as well nourishing the cartilage.

 Types available:

  • Ostenil
  • Ostenil Plus
  • Durolane
  • Synvisc / Synvisc one

Steroid Injections

The orthopaedic community has been using steroid injections for decades, and this still has a role to play when PRP can’t be used. However, steroids have been shown to upregulate MMPs and their action, causing them to work harder and break down the cartilage even faster. This then in fact accelerates OA and results in joint replacement surgery much earlier than necessary. 

We try to avoid the use of steroid injections.  

However, steroids can be effective for pain relief in severe OA and inflammatory conditions when joint replacement surgery may be too high risk.

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