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World J Orthop. 2019 Jul 18;10(7):278-291. doi: 10.5312/wjo.v10.i7.278. eCollection 2019 Jul 18.

Platelet-rich plasma for muscle injuries: A systematic review of the basic science literature.

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Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL 60612, United States.
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL 60612, United States.
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Boulder, CO 80309, United States.
Department of Orthopedics, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL 60612, United States.



Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is an increasingly used biologic adjunct for muscle injuries, as it is thought to expedite healing. Despite its widespread use, little is known regarding the mechanisms by which PRP produces its efficacious effects in some patients.


To clarify the effects of PRP on muscular pathologies at the cellular and tissue levels by evaluating the basic science literature.


A systematic review of PubMed/MEDLINE and EMBASE databases was performed using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines and checklist. Level III in vivo and in vitro studies examining PRP effects on muscles, myocytes and/or myoblasts were eligible for inclusion. Extracted data included PRP preparation methods and study results.


Twenty-three studies were included (15 in vivo, 6 in vitro, 2 in vitro/in vivo). Only one reported a complete PRP cytology (platelets, and red and white blood cell counts). Five in vitro studies reported increased cellular proliferation, four reported increased gene expression, and three reported increased cellular differentiation. Five in vivo studies reported increased gene expression, three reported superior muscle regeneration, and seven reported improved histological quality of muscular tissue.


The basic science literature on the use of PRP in muscle pathology demonstrates that PRP treatment confers several potentially beneficial effects on healing in comparison to controls. Future research is needed to determine optimal cytology, dosing, timing, and delivery methods of PRP for muscle pathologies.


Basic science; Injury; Muscle; Musculoskeletal; Platelet rich plasma

Conflict of interest statement

Conflict-of-interest statement: Dr. Cole reports personal fees from Arthrex, personal fees from Geistlich Pharma, personal fees from Smith & Nephew, personal fees from Bioventus, personal fees from Vericel, personal fees from Zimmer Biomet, personal fees from Anika Therapeutics, personal fees from Pacira Pharmaceuticals, personal fees from Isto Technologies, personal fees from DJO, personal fees from Encore Medical, personal fees from LifeNet Gealth, personal fees from Carticept Medical, personal fees from GE Healthcare, personal fees from Aesculap Biologics, personal fees from DePuy Synthes, personal fees from Genzyme, during the conduct of the study; Dr. Frank is a paid presenter for Arthex, Inc. and reports personal fees from Elsevier, during the conduct of the study.

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