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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 149-154

Ultrasound-tailored treatment of subacromial shoulder pain: Exploring the role of platelet-rich plasma versus steroids

1 Department of Blood Transfusion, SHKM Government Medical College, Nuh, Haryana, India
2 Department of Anesthesia, SHKM Government Medical College, Nuh, Haryana, India
3 Department of Orthopedics, SHKM Government Medical College, Nuh, Haryana, India

Correspondence Address:
Shailesh Kumar Mishra
Department of Blood Transfusion, SHKM Government Medical College, Nuh, Haryana
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/gjtm.gjtm_20_22

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Background and Objectives: Subacromial shoulder pain is the most common cause of shoulder pain consultation in musculoskeletal practice. Partial supraspinatus tendon tears have frequently been treated using a subacromial corticosteroid injection or surgery. The clinical use of a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection is an alternative treatment method for the condition, despite the paucity of evidence of its efficacy. The objective of the study was to assess the clinical effectiveness of autologous PRP in comparison to steroid injection in terms of pain relief and functional restoration in subacromial shoulder pathology. Methodology: All the patients above 18 years of either sex presenting with complaints of shoulder pain and painful abduction and elevation of arm for more than 6 weeks and not received any steroid injection in the previous 6 months were included in the study. In intra-articular PRP (IA-PRP), i.e., test group, 20 patients received 3 ml of single IA PRP injection, and in the steroid group (control group), 20 patients received 1 ml of intra-articular corticosteroid (IA CS) into glenohumeral joint under ultrasound (US) guidance. All patients were prospectively followed for 6 months. Results: There were no differences in visual analog scale (VAS) and disability scores between the PRP and corticosteroid groups at 1-month follow-up. However, the PRP group had better scores than the corticosteroid group on both the VAS and disability scores at 3- and 6-month follow-up. The VAS and disability scores did not change significantly at 6-month follow-up in the corticosteroid group; however, the PRP group showed continued improvement in both VAS and disability scores between 1- and 6-month follow-up. The PRP group had better scores than the corticosteroid group on shoulder range of motion after postintervention follow-up after 1 month. There were no complications in either group. Conclusion: Both subacromial PRP and corticosteroid injections had a positive clinical response in the treatment of shoulder pain. In view of the reached results, it may be assumed that steroid injections may provide symptomatic relief but not promote healing which makes PRP injection a good alternative as it is simple, easy to use, easily available, prepared from patient's own blood, and cost-effective. US-guided injections may increase the efficacy of accurately targeted injections.

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