Platelet-Rich Plasma Augmentation in Meniscal Repair Surgery: A Systematic Review of Comparative Studies
Meniscal lesions occur frequently in athletes and the general population, with approximately 1 million meniscal surgical procedures in the United States each year. For patients with chronic, degenerative tears, meniscal injuries may not be able to heal and require meniscectomy, which involves removal of the meniscus. However, lesions of the peripheral meniscus or well-vascularized portions of the meniscus have shown improved outcomes when treated with meniscal repairs compared to meniscectomies. Furthermore, platelet-rich plasma (PRP), a naturally occurring substance with suggested healing properties, has recently been studied for its possible use during meniscal repairs.
Review of existing studies comparing meniscal repairs with and without PRP augmentation demonstrate that there is insufficient evidence to support a clinical benefit of PRP augmentation. Inconsistent reporting and preparation of PRP thus far make it challenging to draw any conclusions and suggest the need to standardize the usage and reporting of PRP such that higher-quality comparisons can be performed in the future. Studying the effects of PRP in the context of meniscal repair is of interest given the high volume of surgeries being performed as well as non-clinical studies which have shown PRP’s ability to enhance the regenerative ability of meniscal cells.