Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Post-PRP

I'm sitting here with a whole day stretching out ahead of me.  My plans include sitting or lying on the couch most of the day and moving slowly around when necessary.  The pain isn't too bad but I'm definitely uncomfortable.  Squatting, bending, sitting down, and getting in and out of the car is hard.  I'm not going upstairs until I go to bed.  Basically once I get into a position I'm okay but the actual getting there isn't easy.  

The PRP (platelet-rich plasma) procedure went very well.  First I had an ultrasound, performed by Dr. Bouffard, a DMC diagnostic radiologist.  This gave a more detailed picture of what is going on with my injury than the MRI did.  My injury is on the right side so the radiologist took images of my right IT band, piriformis, glute medius and minimus.  Although it's my hamstring that is actually injured, due to compensation I sometimes have pain in my hip and he was able to see thickening/inflammation in these other areas, as well.  

Next he moved onto the hamstrings.  For comparison, he took images of both the left (healthy) and right (injured) hams.  Dr. Bouffard kept marveling at what he saw, telling me I was "textbook!"  I'm guessing he must not see runners too often!  My left side looked great but on the right he saw a problem at the the tuberosity (insertion point where I have pain) and definite thickening of the tendon.  Even though I was confident I'd made the right choice before this, I was relieved to hear Dr. Bouffard tell me there was a reason for my pain and that PRP was the right choice for me.  

After the ultrasound I moved to another room where a nurse drew my blood.  It was a pretty big syringe/plunger she took.  I should have asked how much but it was a good amount.  Next she spun it in a centrifuge for 15 minutes to extract the platelet-rich plasma. which ended up being a relatively small vial.

When my doctor - Dr. Haque, DMC sports medicine - was ready, he and Dr. Bouffard came in with the ultrasound machine again.  They used that to guide the needle to the right spot before injecting the PRP.  The needle had to be directly on the bone - on the ischial tuberosity - but it kept slipping off.  Dr. Haque said due to the tendinosis my hamstring is thickened, which was making it difficult for the needle to get through to the bone.  It was a lot of poking and moving the needle around while Dr. Bouffard monitored it's placement and positioning with the ultrasound.  It took a while but I was grateful that the doctors took all the time needed to make sure it was in the exact right spot.  Once it was on the tuberosity, Dr. Haque injected the PRP and that was that.  

I should expect to be sore for a while.  I'm hoping in a few days I'll be a lot less sore.  I have a follow-up appointment with Dr. Haque on February 16th.  No lower body work until then.  As I said in my last post, that's going to be hard but I'm thinking about the big picture.  I was reminded of these words that you often see at construction sites and roll your eyes at, wondering what "short-term" really means.  





This time, I know that short-term means only 2 weeks and that the relief at the end is going to be oh so sweet.



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