PRF Injection for TMJ
What Is Platelet-Rich Fibrin or PRF?
PRF, also known as i-PRF (injectable platelet-rich fibrin), is considered the newer generation of platelet-rich plasma or PRP. Compared to traditional treatments like taking medication or having surgery for joint pain, PRF injection is a simpler in-office procedure. It also has very low risks and complications.
Medical research studies showed that more platelet-derived growth factors are embedded in the PRF network and many other key nutrients and proteins. These include blood-extracted mesenchymal stem cells and leukocytes. The new PRF-based matrices play a significant role in forming new tissues and the wound-healing process.
PRF is obtained from the patient’s own peripheral blood through a double syringe system. Anticoagulants aren’t necessary for this procedure. The PRF system is used by many clinics as it is cost-effective, timesaving, and easy to use.
What Can Be Treated With PRF Injection?
PRF can be injected in weakened or injured joints, ligaments, and tendons. Arthritic joints and sports injuries can be treated with PRF injection. It can also be used as a treatment method for ACL tears, iliotibial band syndrome, plantar fasciitis, rotator cuff tears, shin splints, and tennis elbow.
How Many Treatment Sessions Are Needed?
Most patients only need 1-3 treatment sessions, and each set is spaced approximately 2-3 months. However, others may require more than three PRF injections depending on their conditions and how they respond to the medication. There is no limit to the number of sessions the patients can have. The risks and side effects of the treatment won’t change no matter how many sessions they go through.
What Are the Potential Benefits of PRF Injection?
Platelet-rich fibrin injection offers plenty of benefits. Here are some of them:
It is relatively painless compared to PRP.
It has a shorter recovery time than PRP.
Most patients see a significant improvement in their symptoms after a few sessions.
It can eliminate the need for more aggressive treatments like long-term medication or surgery.
How Do You Prepare for the Procedure?
Your TMJ specialists may recommend eating light meals, drinking plenty of water, and exercising 1-2 hours before your PRF injection. You also have to avoid using non-steroid anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) one week before the procedure and throughout the course of your treatment.
The treatment may cause localized soreness and discomfort, but extra-strength Tylenol can help alleviate the pain. Heat may also be applied to the area if necessary. Most patients can go back to their normal daily activities after a week.