Sports Pharmacology

  • F. Pigozzi
  • P. Borrione
  • A. Di Gianfrancesco


It is widely accepted that growth factors play a central role in healing processes, by modulating cellular recruitment, duplication, activation, and differentiation. This observation underlies the use of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) in several orthopedic circumstances, all of them characterized by the need to activate, modulate, speed up, and/or ameliorate tissue repair. There is extensive documentation in both animal and human studies, with widespread applications, demonstrating the safety and efficacy of PRP. Unfortunately, the precise biological efficacy and a lack of long-term side effects have yet to be clearly demonstrated. Indeed, not all studies on autologous growth factors have shown favorable results when considering the promotion of bone formation and healing, tissue grafting, and wound repair. In sports medicine, doping-related issues are still a matter of debate when considering of the therapeutic use of PRP in sports-related injuries. In this chapter, PRP applications in orthopedic medicine are described. The limitations of this therapeutic approach are discussed as are issues related to PRP and anti-doping regulations.


Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Hepatocyte Growth Factor Achilles Tendon Plantar Fasciitis Myositis Ossificans 


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© Springer-Verlag Italia 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. Pigozzi
  • P. Borrione
  • A. Di Gianfrancesco

There are no affiliations available

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