People will no longer have to undergo surgeries to repair unhealed fractures, with the All India Institute of Medical sciences (AIIMS) devising a new non-surgical healing technique.
In the Indian Council of Medical Research-funded study, the orthopaedic department of AIIMS over the past two years has treated 55 unhealed fracture cases by injecting platelets into the fracture site.
“Blood platelets are known for their tremendous healing property; when injected in a very high dose at the fracture site, the bone healed,” said Dr Rajesh Malhotra, professor, department of orthopaedics, AIIMS and principal researcher of the study.
Earlier, fractures that refused to heal were repaired using bone graft surgery, for which a part of the pelvic bone of the person was used. Donated bone grafts can also be used for the procedure but due to shortage of bones in bone banks, the person needs to undergo two surgeries.
The new technique, however, is a day care procedure, wherein the person’s blood is taken in the morning, blood bank of AIIMS separates platelets in a few hours that are injected by evening and the person can go back home. The treatment will be provided for free.
The only catch that the researchers felt was that very old fractures did not show good results. “Out of 60 people who were part of the initial research, 55 got completely healed. The five people who did not show much improvement had suffered fracture more than a year ago, showing that the treatment has its limitations,” said Dr Malhotra.