In 2011, Stanford University researcher Jason L. Dragoo, reported that there are over 86,000 PRP Injections performed in the US each year. Market analysis by exerts put the growth rate of the Platelet-Rich Plasma market at almost 12% compounded rate which means that the number is probably 170,000 this year. Yes, well over 170,000 PRP injections are performed annually in the US. A recent scientific research by Russian researchers claim that patients save about US$876.84 on average when choosing Platelet-Rich Plasma over conventional treatments. This researchers included only data for PRP applied for wound healing. But we believe the savings for sports injuries and arthritis patients to be much higher. That’s a WHOPPING $149 million in COSTS SAVED BY PRP INJECTIONS in the US alone.
And we’re just scratching the surface here.
Stephen Clark, PT, DPT, MBA, OCS, president and founder of Athletic Physical Therapy in Los Angeles, notes that “the number of physicians performing PRP procedures has skyrocketed during the past 5 years.” This correlates to the aggressive demand we’re seeing for this safe and autologous treatment. The patients can’t find enough physicians performing the procedure. We receive inquiries from patients wanting to do the treatments and some are even willing to go out of state if there’s none in their area.
Watch this response from this patient about her PRP injections.
And patients like Ken below come back for more after their initial injection.
The science, however, is just catching up with this trend. Recent FDA-Sanctioned, Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled study and Meta-analysis of Level 1 Randomized Controlled Trials continue validating Platelet-Rich Plasma’s role as a better therapeutic tool than conventional treatments.
The big stumbling block is insurance coverage of PRP. Right now, the insurance companies gleefully ignore the 0232T code – the CPT code for Platelet-Rich Plasma injections, with or without image guidance including its harvesting and preparation. But as they’ll soon realize, not accepting PRP injections is actually costing them a lot of money down the road. That’s why many physicians we talk to believe that it’s only a matter of time before the insurance start accepting it.
But even if it remains that patients have pay out of the pocket for these injections, it still is a very cost-efficient way for them to deal chronic injuries and degeneration.
Here are six ways we know.
Typical drug-based approach to healthcare is more symptom management than true healing. This is because the drugs typically do nothing to promote the reversal of the root cause. Instead, they’re good at masking the symptoms. The implications of this are vast when it comes to cost. Since the root cause is not addressed, the patient becomes dependent on the drugs as the disease progresses and symptoms recur. Each time they’re given a stronger dose or a different drug until it no longer works.
Now, compare that to Platelet-Rich Plasma’s approach to actually correct the root cause by promoting healing of the broken or degenerated tissues. Often patients are healed by just one or two injections. And they’re happy for years.
In the long run, the patient who’d had Platelet-Rich Plasma Injections are less likely to develop complications leading to surgery.
This is huge. Analysts estimate that there are over 600 thousand knee-replacement surgeries performed every year. When people think of the cost of these surgeries, even minimally invasive ones, they only look at the hospital bill that may be covered by the insurance provider. But there are numerous other costs like loss productivity due to patient’s downtime, psychological costs, and even miscellaneous costs during the patient’s stay in the hospital.
Moreover, stuff like arthroscopic surgery, the most common orthopedic surgical procedure, has a history of leading to further deterioration and arthritis.
So the patient’s actual costs are high.
All of these are eliminated when you suggest your patients choose Platelet-Rich Plasma at an earlier stage.
According to this paper, post-surgical complications can exceed $10,000 for each patient. That is just for surgeries. What about complications due to side effects of drugs? Research indicate that it’s about $1300 per adverse drug reactions.
In fact, medical complications and side effects are some of the biggest cost burdens associated with modern western medicine.
Then there are scars associated with surgeries. Not to talk about downtime.
Platelet-Rich Plasma on the other hand would have none of that troubles. This risk of injection is extremely low since it’s all autologous. And the procedure is done on an outpatient basis after which the patient can return to normal activities the following morning.
All of these translates to increased savings every time you recommend Platelet-Rich Plasma for your patients.
One of the problems with FDA-approved drugs is that they can only be prescribed for the stated purpose of use. A drug for arthritis patients can only be prescribed for arthritis patients even if it might help a patient with tendonitis. Thus if the patient has more than one orthopedic conditions, chances are each one will need different drugs specifically approved for that condition. Take arthritis and osteoporosis – they are treated completely different when using FDA-approved injections.
On the other hand, Platelet-Rich Plasma is multi-potential. It can be injected on…
You get the point. The possibilities are endless.
This means that the patient do not have to get an assortment of drugs if they need relief for multiple symptoms and thus there is no cost of acquiring new drugs (or potentially leaving drugs unused) each time they have a symptom.
This is one of the main advantage of Platelet-Rich Plasma injections. Unlike FDA-regulated drugs, for which the companies spend millions of dollars for research, several times more on marketing and mass production, there’s little capital costs involved with Platelet-Rich Plasma.
All the research on Platelet-Rich Plasma is done by independent researchers around the world and there’s one no single entity who’s licensing it. So customers aren’t paying for bloated research funding and marketing costs.
This means you can afford to charge your patients less.
The process of getting admitted to a hospital is mentally taxing. And most of the surgical procedures, however minimal require hospitalization. And that means you need big equipments and all sort of things. So only big hospitals can do those. There is an endless list of charges that the hospital needs to include as a standard and depending on the co-pay agreement with their insurance, the patients may end up paying anywhere from 10% to 50% of these extra unnecessary charges.
With Platelet-Rich Plasma, though, it is an outpatient treatment done in small, independent clinics as a 45-minute procedure. And these clinics are very cost-efficient in their operations because they do not need to employ a lot of staff.
The takeaway? Patients pay significantly less compared to surgeries. And the small, independent clinics have a big advantage over large hospitals.
Platelet-Rich Plasma is here to stay. The skyrocketing demand is proof. And there is no reason why you shouldn’t be offering it. Thousands of cases prove that it works. We’ve shown you how it saves your patients money.
If you’re an orthopedic surgeon, rheumatologist, and/or run a pain management clinic, you’re doing a tremendous disservice to your patients if you’re not suggesting Platelet-Rich Plasma to your patients. Because Platelet-Rich Plasma has the highest adoption rate in this field – and for a reason. It has become indispensable.
The second group of people who uses PRP is aesthetic professionals followed by ophthalmic surgeons.
We’ll let some of the stories from Physicians themselves convince you about offering Platelet-Rich Plasma.
Here’s one physician who saw the value in Platelet-Rich Plasma ONLY when he himself was forced to seek the treatment.
“I am a physician who suffered with high hamstring tendinopathy which prevented me from playing competitive soccer and sprinting. I tried all conventional treatments for two years without any improvement. These included physiotherapy from a nationally recognized sports physio. I also used NSAIDs, fish oil/omega 3, glucosamine and chondroitin. I was looking at retiring from competitive sport. As a last resort I had two injections of PRP by a specialist sports physician. After three months I can now run without pain. This was a last ditch treatment that worked for me. (Although it was a trial of n=1).”
Another dentist reports that he’s been using it for more than 8 years for grafting procedures.
PRP is very effective in bone grafting procedures with a huge amount of research supporting it’s effect in speeding healing. It’s use in tendonitis seems to be questionable. I am an oral & maxillofacial surgeon and have used it for greater than eight years with great success in my grafting procedures in the jaws.
The point is, we could go on and on and on about the reasons why a lot of physicians are excited about this treatment. It is simple and practical enough to quickly adopt it into your practice. And the risks are absolutely minimal.
That being said, you might want to undergo training for advanced prp injections at the Interventional Orthopedics foundation. Because, the ability to accurately localize the Platelet-Rich Plasma is one of the biggest needle movers when it comes to extracting the maximum therapeutic benefits. According to the foundation, only 1% of the physicians are able to do these precise injections without training. And so, chances are you may not have had the training. The Interventional Orthopedics Foundation also offer home study videos if you’re not able to attend in-person.
And if you need help setting up your Platelet-Rich Plasma workbench, we’re here to help. Give us a call at (844) 377-7787 or drop us an email via [email protected]. We handle everything from PRP kits to centrifuges to workspace for PRP and marketing brochures.