Platelet Rich Plamsa (PRP)
What is platelet rich plasma (PRP)?
PRP is derived from whole blood. Plasma is the portion of the blood that does not include red or white blood cells. PRP should include plasma and a high concentration of platelets from your blood.
Naturally, our bodies utilize platelets and other parts of our blood to heal injuries. Activated platelets release growth factors to promote wound healing. In the past, platelet rich plasma (PRP) has been used by physicians to prevent infection and speed wound healing. The growth factors released by platelets have functions including the following:
- Tissue repair and wound healing
- Cell growth and generation of new cells
- Collagen stimulation
- Promotion of blood supply to treated area
In recent years, interest has grown in cosmetic uses for PRP. Several studies have shown improvements in aging skin, acne scars, and also hair loss with PRP treatment. We will learn more about its benefits as this scientific field grows.
At VibrantSkin Dr. Buster uses The Selphyl® System. It is designed for the safe and quick preparation of Platelet Rich Fibrin Matrix (PRFM) from a small sample of blood that we draw from you at the beginning of your treatment visit. Selphyl® removes virtually all contaminating cells (red and white blood cells) to give us PRP. Then we convert the PRP to Platelet Rich Fibrin Matrix (PRFM) in a well-defined series of steps. The PRFM creates a scaffold that protects and preserves platelets to allow them to release growth factors for up to seven days after treatment. This allows Selphyl® PRFM to stand out among PRP systems, as others do not have this scaffold capability and most only release growth factors and platelets immediately (within minutes to hours after treatment).
Dr. Buster uses PRP to promote collagen stimulation for anti-aging treatments, for hair loss, and also in combination with other procedures such as microneedling and laser resurfacing for acne/other scars and wrinkles.
Where can PRP treatments be done?
Virtually any area of skin can be treated with PRP. The most common areas Dr. Buster treats are the face (full face or localized areas) and the scalp.
Is PRP a filler?
No. PRP is intended to improve skin texture and hydration and stimulate new collagen for a subtle improvement in volume. Filler is better for filling volume deficits, but does not really improve skin texture/integrity. Dr. Buster will advise you of which option (filler, PRP, both, or other) she believes is best for you.
What should I expect?
PRP may be done alone or in combination with other procedures such as microneedling or laser. Swelling and/or lumps with PRP alone typically resolves within 72 hours. Occasionally swelling can last up to one week.
For cosmetic improvements, treatments are typically done in a series of 2-3 or more sessions spaced 4-6 weeks apart. Collagen remodeling occurs over months so results can be appreciated over time. Cosmetic results typically last approximately one year.
For scarring, the number of treatments is variable depending on the extent of scarring, location, and type of scar(s) as well as other factors including what the PRP is combined with for treatment. Dr. Buster develops a customized plan for each patient.
For hair loss, there are usually 3-4 treatments spaced every 4-6 weeks. It typically takes 3 to 6 months after final treatment to see the full result. After the PRP sessions are completed, a maintenance regimen (e.g., topical and/or oral medications) is sometimes initiated. Dr. Buster will see most patients at 6 weeks, 3 months, and 6 months after treatment. Length of retention of new hair varies by type of hair loss, adherence to maintenance regimen, and patient specific factors. Repeat sessions may be needed if hair loss is again appreciated.