Arthritis & Sports is excited to announce that our TRICARE patients now may qualify for coverage of PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) injections for chronic knee pain and tennis elbow! The orthopaedic specialists at Arthritis & Sports have been offering PRP treatments — a same-day, non-surgical procedure — for many years. “TRICARE is always working to improve the benefit,” said Elan Green, chief of the Medical Benefits and Reimbursement Section for the TRICARE Health Plan at the Defense Health Agency. “We want to advance health care for our beneficiaries, and we hope these changes improve treatment options for you and your family.” TRICARE may cover PRP injections if you’re diagnosed with:
Mild to moderate chronic osteoarthritis of the knee.
Lateral epicondylitis, also known as “tennis elbow.”
“If these policy updates apply to you or your family member, we hope that you will take steps to learn more and take advantage of your health benefits,” said Green.
If you've been diagnosed with either of these conditions and conservative treatments have been unsuccessful, you may qualify for coverage. Don’t wait – start feeling better today!
How does PRP work?
PRP Therapy takes advantage of the healing properties of platelets and allows for precise, targeted injections of PRP to areas where there has been chronic damage or injury. Simply put, PRP is a volume of plasma that has a concentration of platelets that is 1.5 to 10 times higher (and sometimes more) than what is found in normal human blood.
After a blood sample is obtained from a patient, the blood is put into a centrifuge, which is a tool that separates the blood into its individual components. The sample is put through a "soft spin" to separate the platelet-containing plasma from the red and white blood cells, and then through a "hard spin" to further separate the plasma into platelet-rich and platelet-poor portions. With a substantial amount of research supporting the efficacy of PRP, studies have found that PRP injections are able to improve function and decrease pain while accelerating the healing of many orthopaedic injuries and conditions. Performed in-office, PRP injections help many of our patients avoid surgical intervention and lengthy recovery periods. Since the procedure is performed in our office, there is no need for anesthesia, surgery, or other invasive procedures - not only does this save our patient's time, but also saves them money!