İsmail Hakkı Korucu1, Ahmet Fevzi Kekeç1, Abdullah Arslan2, Pembe Oltulu3, Emine Nedime Korucu4, Mustafa Özer1

1Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology, Necmettin Erbakan University, Meram Faculty of Medicine, Konya, Turkey
2Department of Underwater and Hyperbaric Medicine, Necmettin Erbakan University, Meram Faculty of Medicine, Konya, Turkey
3Departmant of Pathology, Necmettin Erbakan University, Meram Faculty of Medicine, Konya, Turkey
4Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Necmettin Erbakan University, Faculty of Science, Konya, Turkey

Keywords: Cartilage regeneration, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, osteochondral defect, platelet-rich plasma


Objectives: This study aims to investigate the effects of hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) therapy and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) on the regeneration of osteochondral defects of the rats, and the synergistic effect of this combined treatment.

Materials and methods: This randomized, controlled, and interventional animal study was conducted between May 2014 and August 2014 Osteochondral regeneration was evaluated in four treatment groups (control, PRP, HBO, and HBO+PRP groups) at the 30th day after iatrogenic injury. Thirty-two female Wistar albino rats (weighing 248-305 g) underwent arthrotomy and osteochondral surgery on left knees. The regenerations of defects were then examined histologically by the modified version of O’Driscoll score.

Results: Groups that were treated with either HBO or PRP alone regenerated significantly better than the control group (p=0.01), while no significant difference was found between the HBO- and PRP-treated groups (p>0.05). The defects in group 4 (treated with both HBO and PRP) regenerated significantly better than the control group, the HBO-treated group alone, and the PRP-treated group alone (p=0.01).

Conclusion: The results of this study showed a synergistic effect of HBO and PRP on knee cartilage regeneration. However, the possible underlying mechanisms should be the subject of future researches. The aggregation and activation of growth factors released from platelets whose activation is increased in the hyperbaric environment may explain this effect. This may result in a better regeneration than the effect of PRP or HBO alone.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declared no conflicts of interest with respect to the authorship and/or publication of this article.

Financial Disclosure

The authors received no financial support for the research and/or authorship of this article.