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Platelet Rich Plasma, or PRP, is a fraction of your own blood drawn off and spun down and then reapplied or injected to create improved tissue health. Platelets are very small cells in your blood that are involved in the clotting process. As they are organise in the clot they release a number of enzymes to promote healing and tissue responses including attracting stem cells to repair the damaged area. When used in injured or sun- and time-damaged tissue they can induce a remodeling of the tissue to a more healthy and younger state.
What Can It Be Used For?
As mentoned platelet rich plasma - PRP - can be used in speeding healing of open wounds, in tendon and other musculoskeletal injuries and in problems like arthritis. If you check You Tube and Google for PRP or platelet rich plasma therapy you will encounter many people, especially orthopaedic surgeons explaining the technology and showing in what situations they can use it. But platelet rich plasma - PRP - can be used also to improve skin texture, lines and wrinkles. By placing it into the deeper skin layer fibroblasts and other cells can be stimulated to a more youthful function. Areas like crepey areas under eyes and in necks can show dramatic improvement. Lines like about upper lips can also improve. And the general texture and turgor of the skin will improve.
Who Will Benefit From It?
Anyone with an open wound or injury, especially taking time to heal will improve speedily with platelet rich plasma therapy - PRP. Also anyone who is using cosmetic treatments for lines, wrinkles, poorer skin condition and general skin reconditioning can be improved with platelet rich plasma therapy or PRP. And anyone who has had problems tolerating products for these sorts of procedures will be encouraged by the fact they are using purely their own cells and tissues. The most dramatic results so far have been in the crepey skin problems in areas such as under eyes, necks and decolletage areas. It is not designed to replace surgery for loose skin where procedures such as blepharoplasties etc would be more appropriate.
How Is It Done?
A tube (or two or three) are drawn off in much the same way blood is taken for blood testing. While the skin is being numbed with a topical anaesthetic cream, the blood sample is spun for around eight minutes in a centrifuge to produce the platelet rich plasma - PRP. The platelet rich plasma - PRP - is drawn from the tube into a small syringe. A small amount of calcium chloride solution is added to the syringe to stimulate the process. Once mixed in the syringe the platelet rich plasma - PRP - is then injected in the cleaned anaesthetised skin in either small lines or tiny dots in the deeper skin layer (or onto the open wound or about the injured area for those problems). For skin improvements platelet rich plasma is instilled into the same areas over three sessions usually spaced around a month apart each time.
How Many Treatments Are Required?
With wounds and injuries one treatment of platelet rich plasma may be enough. With more cosmetic applications usually three treatments will be required. Platelet rich plasma - PRP - is instilled on three occasions usually a month apart.
How Quickly Does The Result Show?
To those people aware of their skin texture and structure they may be aware within a week of some early changes. But this is a gradual process with changes continuing to show for three to six months after the treatment with the platelet rich plasma - PRP. So for a cosmetic application it would be best to wait for three months or so after the third treatment session of platelet rich plasma - PRP - before making a judgement on the outcome. And some will be achieving further changes for another three months - six months after the last treatment.
How Long Does It Last?
At the moment the effect seems to last about two years. Obviously there will be variations from one person to the next on this. Initially it was felt the effects and length of benefit would be better in younger patients with younger cells to work with. But with platelet rich plasma therapy, as with non-ablative laser treatments, effects can be very good in people one would consider older.
Can The Treatment Be Repeated?
There is no reason that platelet rich plasma - PRP - therapies could not be repeated. As you are using your own tissue there is no problem with continued use. Some people elect to do a single session each year to boost and lengthen the effect of the initial group of treatments.
Are There Side Effects?
There will be some short-lasting pinkness or redness of the skin following injection of the platelet rich plasma - PRP. Bruising is also a possibility as the needle is used to place the PRP into the skin. This may take a week or so to resolve. PRP - platelet rich plasma therapy creates subtle changes with your own tissue.
PRP PHOTO GALLERY