Do a quick internet search on PRP therapy and you’ll discover a steady stream of articles to read. From news stories to blog posts, it seems like everyone and his brother has something to say about platelet-rich plasma and the regenerative medicine procedures derived from it. To say the PRP therapy market is emerging is to state the obvious.
According to The Check Chronicle, the U.S. market was valued at some $195 million in 2017. It is expected to enjoy steady growth of about 12% through 2026, eventually exceeding $543 million. So what is driving this incredible growth? The Check Chronicle points to four things:
1. A Rise in Orthopedic and Sports Injuries
First up is a reported rise in the number of patients seeking treatment for orthopedic and sports injuries. Some of the increase points to an aging population more likely to suffer from chronic osteoarthritis pain requiring joint replacement surgery. Obesity appears to be another factor, given that the obese population is 20 times more likely to undergo joint replacement surgery.
As for sports injuries, pro athletes are especially amenable to PRP therapy as an alternative to surgery and long-term pain medication. According to Utah-based Apex Biologix, the demand for PRP treatments among pro athletes doesn’t show any signs of leveling off.
2. Greater Interest in Cosmetic Procedures
The second factor cited by The Check Chronicle is an increased interest in cosmetic procedures. Simply put, patients are more willing to undergo cosmetic procedures to help address hair loss and reduce the effects of aging. Aesthetic physicians are offering PRP injections alongside Botox injections, dermal injections, and other procedures.
Dermatologists have also discovered PRP as a treatment for androgenetic alopecia. They are encouraged by studies demonstrating that some patients respond quite well to PRP therapy with new hair growth and greater hair thickness.
3. New Devices and Applications
PRP therapy is part of the larger field of regenerative medicine. As interest in regenerative medicine increases, researchers are looking at new applications for PRP therapy. For example, one of the more interesting areas of study right now is utilizing PRP in the treatment of chronic ulcers.
Hand-in-hand with new applications are new devices intended to make the application of PRP therapy easier. From double spinning centrifuges to imaging devices designed to help doctors find the best injection sites, technological advancements are improving the way PRP therapy is utilized.
4. Greater Awareness
Last but not least, it is hard to escape the reality that the awareness of PRP therapy is growing in leaps and bounds. Some of this new awareness is the result of positive news coverage demonstrating how PRP injections are being effectively utilized by local doctors and clinics. And of course, some of the awareness is due to negative publicity as well.
At any rate, PRP therapy and its companion, stem cell therapy, are getting a lot of press attention these days. Hardly a day goes by when you cannot find at least a few new stories making their way across the news wires. Even local television stations are routinely interviewing doctors to get their take on PRP therapy. You can see them on the nightly news.
Apex Biologix isn’t surprised by projections of 12% growth over the next five or six years. It is safe to say that most doctors and clinics already offering PRP therapy probably aren’t surprised either. Regenerative medicine in general is an emerging field with a lot of exciting possibilities. All the while, patients tired of the old ways of doing things are ready to embrace something new.