The Efficacy of Ultrasound-guided Percutaneous Needle Tenotomy (PNT) versus Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) with PNT in the Treatment of Chronic Tendinosis

IRB Number: 14135

Institutional Review Board, Hospital for Special Surgery

January 23, 2015

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Principal Investigator

Jonathan S. Kirschner, MD, RMSK


David A. Spinner, DO
Dallas J. Kingsbury, MD
Alexandra Voigt, BA
Julian R. Harrison, BS
Kwadwo Boachie-Adjei, CPH, BS


Tendinopathy is a clinical syndrome of chronic pain and tendon degeneration that impairs a person's ability to perform daily activities and recreation. Traditional conservative treatments include activity modification, exercises, ice/heat, and medications and corticosteroid injection. A newer treatment is percutaneous needle tenotomy (PNT), in which the affected area is repetitively needled to disrupt pathological tissue and induce bleeding. This turns a non-healing chronic injury into an acute injury with enhanced healing capability. Another is Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP), whereby patients' own platelets are injected into the affected area, also activating growth factors. There has been promising research in these tendinopathy treatments but more research is needed.

The investigators plan to expand on prior studies to identify a reproducible and efficacious treatment for chronic tendinopathy to reduce pain and improve function and quality of life. Our goal in this study is to assess the efficacy of ultrasound guided (USG) PNT versus PNT with peritendinous PRP as a treatment for chronic tendinopathy.

This study entails 2 years of follow-up. We anticipate enrolling 37 study participants here at Hospital for Special Surgery. 

Inclusion/Exclusion Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

Pain that is a direct result of tendinosis as determined by history of injury and study team member physician’s best judgment and review of medical records, imaging studies, etc.
Tendinosis confirmed by clinical and ultrasound examination
≥3 months of pain after injury that has failed conservative treatments or after corticosteroid (CSI) (must be 3 months after CSI to avoid theoretical tendon rupture)

Exclusion Criteria:

Taking Coumadin or other anticoagulant or anti-platelet medication
Known coagulopathy or bleeding dyscrasia
Current or recent fluoroquinolone prescription
Prior PNT or PRP for the affected tendon(s)
Known systemic illnesses such as:

autoimmune or inflammatory disease
uncontrolled diabetes

Presence of other musculoskeletal injury or tendon rupture in the region
Currently are or plan to become pregnant during the study 

Contact Information

Julian Harrison