Orthokine Therapy is a unique method for biological joint pain treatment without addition of chemicals. The applied substance (serum) contains components such as proteins exclusively from the patient’s own body (autologous).

In a first step, your blood will be taken to generate conditioned serum, enriched with anti-inflammatory and regenerative proteins. In the second step, this autologous conditioned serum is reinjected into the painful joint.

Safety and efficacy of the Orthokine®-Therapy has been confirmed by independent clinical studies

There has been a lot of media interest recently in Orthokine Therapy as players in the NBA such as Kobe Bryant and AFL players including Nick Riewoldt, Adam Cooney and golfer Fred couples as well as other luminaries such as Pope John Paul II have had this therapy. This is only mentioned as to demonstrate that this is not a fringe therapy. This has rigorous scientific backing and worldwide experience.

What is Orthokine?

Orthokine therapy is a modern method for the treatment of diseases of the joints and tendons.

This is similar to another form of blood injection therapy called Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP).The similarity is that in both procedures a patient’s own blood is used as part of the preparation process.

Advantages of orthokine over PRP is that in orthokine there is a far higher concentration of growth factors as well in addition, a special protein called Interleukin-1-receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra).

Interleukin-1 (IL-1) is important has it has an important role in inflammation by switching on the inflammatory process. This leads to pain and further injury to the affected joint.

The Orthokine process involves the isolation and induction of Interleukin-1-receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra) which blocks interleukin-1 and thereby help block the inflammatory process. These two factors, namely the increased growth factors and the isolation and induction of Interleukin-1-receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra) are what is thought to be the catalyst in, reducing pain and encourage healing of the treated region.

This has been found to be of particular use in the treatment of arthritis (especially the knee) and tendinosis/tendon tears

Who Is a Good Candidate For This Procedure?

Ideal candidates are those with mild to moderate arthritis or a chronic (greater than 3-6 months) ligament or tendon injury which is not responding to other forms of therapy

If you think you are a candidate, we would require a referral from your GP or specialist and organise and appointment where we would assess your suitability to undertake this form of treatment.

Why Orthokine and Not PRP?

In studies it appears to be a superior product to PRP. Particularly when used to treat joints.

A major advantage of orthokine over PRP, is its ability to be administered even if a patient is on anticoagulation therapy.


Preparation: 24 hours before blood taking

  • Have a light breakfast.
  • Drink 2-3 L of water
  • Avoid alcohol and avoid very fatty meals
  • Approximately 30- 60mls of blood is taken from you (important to be well hydrated) to be well hydrated prior to this procedure. The blood is then processed.
  • The blood is incubated and centrifuged and then placed in ampoules, later available for injection.
  • In the morning your blood will be taken at your physicians practice. You will make an appointment for the first reinjection.
  • Typically, 4-6 injections are performed on a weekly basis. The exact number of injections performed will depend on the particular region being treated and type of injury involved. These injections will always be performed under ultrasound guidance.

After the Orthokine Injection:

Following injections, patients are advised to avoid strenuous exercise for a period of 48 hours.

No swimming or sauna for 24 hours after injection

Risks and Complications:

The Orthokine®-Therapy is 100% autologous and based on a biological principle. Therefore side effects occur rarely. The most common effects are general reactions to the injection itself. No negative interferences with other treatments are known.

  • Ongoing pain and joint stiffness
  • A lack of benefit from the injection
  • Swelling and numbness around the injection site, which may last around 2 hours.
  • Some patients may experience a sensation of pressure in the joint for about 24 hours after reinjection.Infection and local bleeding (as after any injection).
  • Allergic reactions rare.
  • Nerve irritation if area treated is close to a nerve – rare.


Acute infection, Fever, Dysentery during the past 3 days, Antibiotics up to one week before planned reinjection, Vaccination within the past 4 weeks

Follow-up After The Procedure:

During and after Orthokine injections it is important that one undergoes a rehabilitation pathway in order to obtain the best results and to exclude and if necessary treat underlying/pre-existing factors contributing to the relevant problem in the first place.


There is a cost for this treatment that is non-rebateable. This will discussed prior to the treatment being performed.

For Articles on Orthokine Please See Below:

  1. Autologous conditioned serum (Orthokine) is an effective treatment for knee osteoarthritis. Baltzer AW, etal Osteoarthritis Cartilage.2009 Feb;17(2):152-60
  2. Treatment with platelet-rich plasma is more effective than placebo for knee osteoarthritis: a prospective, double-blind, randomized trial. Patel S, etal   Am J Sports Med.2013 Feb;41(2):356-64
  3. A Randomized Clinical Trial Evaluating Plasma Rich in Growth Factors (PRGF-Endoret) Versus Hyaluronic Acid in the Short-Term Treatment of Symptomatic Knee Osteoarthritis. Mikel Sanchez, etal Arthroscopy: The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery, Vol 28, No S (August), 2012: pp J070-1078
  4. Orthokine-Therapy for high-pain knee Osteoarthritis (OA) may delay surgery. Independent 2 year case follow-up. Jaime Baselga etal, PLOS one Dec 2015
  5. Use of autologous conditioned serum (Orthokine®) for the treatment of the degenerative osteoarthritis of the temporomandibular joint. Review of the literature Juan C. Álvarez-Camino etal Med Oral Patol Oral Cir Bucal. 2013 May; 18(3): e433–e438.

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