Purpose: To determine whether the use of platelet-rich plasma gel (PRPG) affects magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings in the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) graft during the first year after reconstruction.
Methods: A prospective single-blinded study of 50 ACL reconstructions in 50 patients was performed. In group A (study group) PRPG was added to the graft with a standardized technique, and in group B (control group) no PRPG was added. An MRI study was performed postoperatively between 3 and 9 months in group A and between 3 and 12 months in group B. The imaging analysis was performed in a blind protocol by the same radiologist.
Results: The mean heterogeneity score value at the time of MRI, assigned by the radiologist, was 1.14 in group A and 3.25 in group B. Both groups were comparable in terms of sex and age (P < .05). The mean time to obtain a completely homogeneous intra-articular segment in group A (PRPG added) was 177 days after surgery, and it was 369 days in group B. Using the quadratic predictive model, these findings show that group A (PRPG added) needed only 48% of the time group B required to achieve the same MRI image (P < .001).
Conclusions: ACL reconstruction with the use of PRPG achieves complete homogeneous grafts assessed by MRI, in 179 days compared with 369 days for ACL reconstruction without PRPG. This represents a time shortening of 48% with respect to ACL reconstruction without PRPG.
(c) 2010 Arthroscopy Association of North America. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.