Regenerative Medicine

Stem Cell

A paradigm shift is occurring in medicine where attention is moving away from the use of drugs to treat symptoms and toward an effort to engage in the body’s own natural healing process to regenerate damaged tissues.  This is called regenerative medicine. 

Platelet-rich plasma, or PRP for short, is the form of regenerative medicine that has the most evidence with regards to musculoskeletal medicine.  PRP treatment involves drawing your blood and spinning it down in a centrifuge in a process that concentrates the platelets, and then allows us to extract them.  Why platelets? Because platelets are loaded with growth factors, and growth factors are the signal by which your body initiates the healing process and recruits the other healing cells, including stem cells.

centrifugeDr. Shoemaker is highly knowledgeable about platelet-rich plasma and has spoken nationally on the subject, lead discussion groups, and trained other physicians in PRP techniques. Optimal use of platelet-rich plasma is integrally connected with proficient use of ultrasound as it is critical that the PRP is delivered accurately to the target tissues. Few physicians in the northern front range possess the training and skill-set that Dr. Shoemaker has both in ultrasound guided needle placement and the administration of PRP.

At Ascent Pain & Injury Specialists we use an evidence-based approach to all of our treatment recommendations. Platelet-rich plasma is no different. While you can find practices that will readily put PRP anywhere you point to that hurts, at this time there is a select number of applications for PRP that have strong evidence to support its use.

The decision to use platelet-rich plasma starts with an accurate diagnosis of your symptoms and discussion of the pros and cons of this treatment method.  If you are interested in PRP and would like to see if you are a candidate please schedule an appointment.