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BioMed Research International
Volume 2017, Article ID 7919201, 10 pages
Research Article

Efficacy of Platelet-Rich Plasma in Retarding Intervertebral Disc Degeneration: A Meta-Analysis of Animal Studies

1Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Southwest Hospital, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, China
2Department of Respiratory Medicine, The Third Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan 410013, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Qiang Zhou; moc.361@hlt_qz

Received 7 January 2017; Revised 24 March 2017; Accepted 11 April 2017; Published 2 July 2017

Academic Editor: Giuseppe Filardo

Copyright © 2017 Pei Li et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objectives. Several animal studies have demonstrated the positive effects of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) on disc degeneration retardation. The present meta-analysis was to verify the efficacy of PRP in retarding disc degeneration in animal. Methods. Relevant studies were identified and evaluated according to our inclusion and exclusion criteria. The standardized mean difference (SMD) and related 95% confidence interval (95% CI) were estimated to assess PRP efficiency. Results. In total, eleven studies were included in this meta-analysis. Significant differences were found in the PRP treatment group, which showed increased disc height (SMD = 2.66, 95% CI: 1.86, 3.47, ), increased MRI T2 signal intensity (SMD = −3.29, 95% CI: −4.44, −2.13, ), and decreased histological degeneration grade (SMD = −4.28, 95% CI: −5.26, −3.30, ). However, no significant increase in collagen II expression was found (SMD = 25389.74, 95% CI: −27585.72, 78365.21, ). Apart from the subgroup analysis of the disc height based on animal species (pig) and disc degeneration model (chymopapain induction), other subgroup analysis based on animal species (rabbit and rat), study design, disc degeneration model, and follow-up period demonstrated that PRP treatment can significantly restore disc height and increase MRI T2 signal intensity. Conclusions. PRP treatment is potentially effective in restoring disc height of rodent rabbit and rat, reducing histological degeneration grade, and increasing MRI T2 image signal. PRP injection may be promising therapy for retarding disc degeneration.