Three years ago we reported a randomised controlled trial that cast doubt on the value of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for the treatment of Achilles tendinopathy.
A recent meta-analysis of trials of PRP in bone and soft tissue disorders
increases this doubt, finding no significant benefit of the treatment in 6 randomised controlled trials and 3 prospective cohort studies. However as one novel treatment appears to be hitting the buffers another emerges into the research spotlight. 1
In a randomised controlled trial
40 Achilles tendons in 32 patients with a diagnosis of Achilles tendinosis (tendinopathy) were injected with skin-derived fibroblasts suspended in autologous plasma or with local anaesthetic. Significant improvement in pain scores was seen in the patients with unilateral tendinopathy injected with fibroblasts – but intriguingly not in the 8 patients with 2 bilateral pathology.
No significant adverse effects were observed, and the authors propose that this new treatment should be subject to large-scale trials.