Platelet-rich plasma (PRP)
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is blood plasma that has been enriched with platelets. The platelets release fundamental protein growth factors which are vital for tissue regeneration, wound healing, creating new blood and stimulating stem cells.
Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) has been used in aesthetic medicine all over Europe, Asia and South Africa to rejuvenate and slow down the aging process and remains widely used around the world as an effective solution to accelerate the process of wound healing (sports injury, spinal & heart surgery, burns, osteoarthritis and aesthetic medical treatments) as well as a treatment for hair loss (male-type alopecia).
What is PRP used for?
- Skin Rejuvenation by smoothing out wrinkles & folds, encouraging new collagen production and by improving skin colour, elasticity & density. PRP is particularly affective for fine lines under the eyes that are difficult to treat by conventional rejuvenation therapy. It is also effective for treating acne scars, saggy skin, eye bags, and neck wrinkles.
- Skin Regeneration by accelerating the process of wound healing after sports injuries, burns and aesthetic medicine treatments such as laser and IPL.
- Hair Regeneration by nourishing the hair follicles and increasing blood supply which activate the dormant hair roots within months. PRP also stimulates the stem cells of the hair follicles thus helping in hair multiplication.
How does it work?
Obtaining PRP is a relatively simple process: a patient’s own blood is collected through the vein and transferred into a sterile tube which is immediately placed into a centrifuge that rotates at high speed. This procedure separates the red blood cells from the platelets, which are blood cells that release growth factors that help the body heal itself. The concentrated platelets are then re-injected into the proper layers of the patient’s skin.
Platelet activation plays a key role in the process of wound and soft tissue healing. PRP Rejuvenation is often combined with dermal fillers, lasers, anti-wrinkle injections and even Thread-Lift. The pairing of PRP with some of these treatments make this Hollywood’s current favoured anti-aging treatment.
Is it safe?
Yes. Because PRP is developed from your own blood (autologous), it is inherently safe and free from transmissible diseases. Autologous PRP has been used for over 30 years as an aid in recovery following certain surgical, orthopaedic and dental procedures. There are thousands of research articles published on the safety of PRP. Because your own blood is used, there is no risk of a transmissible infection and a very low risk of allergic reaction.
What is the treatment like?
A small amount of your own blood is collected with a sterile syringe and placed in disposable sterile tubes containing a separating gel that helps collect the PRP. The tubes are then spun at high speed in a centrifuge machine to obtain Platelet-Rich Plasma. While your blood is being processed, a numbing cream is applied to the treatment areas. Once the PRP is ready, the doctor injects the platelet-rich portion of this blood directly into the patient’s treatment areas and the procedure is complete.
The process takes approximately 1 hour.
How many treatments do I need?
For best results, 3-5 treatments are recommended every 4-6 weeks, depending on your skin’s condition. Combining PRP with dermal fillers and Botox not only maximizes skin rejuvenation, but also prolongs the effects of the anti-wrinkle substances giving you longer-lasting youth. Maintenance treatments are recommended every 6 to 12 months.
PRP Tissue Regeneration
The response to treatment varies with different individuals depending on the area and severity of the problem. Most patients require 2 treatments but some patients require more. Patients are usually evaluated to see how they will respond to the injection. Some people respond immediately, but most of the time, it takes approximately 6 weeks to respond to the treatment.
PRP Hair Regeneration
Six treatments are recommended at monthly intervals. The result will start to show within two months after the third treatment. The success rate for hair regeneration through PRP is 80%. When combined with testosterone and vitamin B injections, the results are improved, especially for elder men whose testosterone levels have decreased with age.
What to expect after the treatment and aftercare
There may be redness and mild bruising on the injection sites occurring for 5-7 days post-treatment. Mild swelling may also occur 24 to 48 hours post-treatment. Treated areas must be kept clean at all times and antibiotic cream should be applied to areas with more than the usual number of injections. Arnica cream can be applied should bruising occur post-treatment. There is no need to keep out of the sun but it is necessary to wear a good quality sun screen with a 30 SPF.