Have you heard of PRP treatments? Or maybe you or a friend has had one that did not produce any discernible results andyou are wondering why that was?
Here are a few facts about the Platelet Rich Plasma treatment that might help to answer some of your questions.
First things first,
WHAT EXACTLY IS PRP?
Platelet Rich Plasma is a non-surgical natural regenerative treatment that helps to slow down the ageing process, aids recovery and enhances results of other rejuvenation procedures.
PRP helps to give the skin the extra glow and stimulate its healing and regeneration in a completely natural way.
The procedure has been around for some time – it has been used in sports medicine and orthopaedics to help with recovery and regeneration of damaged tissues. Similarly, in aesthetic medicine platelets are extracted from your blood to restore and increase collagen production in the skin.
HOW IS PRP DIFFERENT FROM A VAMPIRE FACIAL?
Well, technically speaking, they are the same thing. Vampire Facial is a term coined by an American Physician who registered a trademark for a specific protocol of Platelet Rich Plasma. The science behind the treatment is the same.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
With age, our skin loses its ability to produce collagen and elastin naturally. These two proteins are responsible for keeping skin plump, smooth, and resilient to stretch. This is the reason why our skin becomes saggy and loose as we age.
We lose a lot of the underlying fat layer that keeps young skin smooth and supple. Mature skin experiences a decrease in the size and number of oil glands, which contributes to dry skin and impaired skin barrier function. Our skin slows down in its ability to regenerate itself.
PRP treatment uses growth factors that are stored in the platelets in our blood to set off signalling pathways in our skin to get it to naturally increase collagen and elastin levels. Growth factors stimulate development of new blood vessels and oil glands to improve skin nourishment.
Restoring these components of youthful skin diminishes wrinkles and lines and helps to improve skin firmness and restore its glow. Additionally, the treatment can:
· Even out skin tone
· Brighten the under-eye area
· Improve appearance of open pores
· Rejuvenate and thicken thinning scalp hair
· Maintain the skin’s youthful appearance through the ageing process
WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE PROCEDURE?
Before the treatment, I will take a small amount of your blood, just like when you have a blood test. The blood is then put into a special machine that spins it fast enough to separate different cells present in the blood. This allows for the Platelet Rich Plasma to be extracted afterwards.
I will apply numbing cream to your face to minimise any discomfort.
Your PRP is then carefully injected into the skin with tiny needles or a cannula. The whole procedure takes around 45 minutes. Most patients find the treatment quite painless.
Over the coming days and weeks, the platelets and anti-inflammatory cells injected will stimulate the healing process and new collagen/elastin production in the skin.
The results will become apparent in the coming days to weeks and will get even better over the following months.
Because the plasma injected into the face comes from your own body, the treatment is completely natural and there is no risk of an allergic reaction or intolerance to the treatment. It is one of the safest procedures you can have to rejuvenate the skin. It is suitable for all skin types.
IS THERE ANY DOWNTIME?
PRP is a non-surgical procedure, so patients are normally able to return to their normal lives the very next day.
As with any injections, you may have some mild bruising, tenderness and swelling for a few hours after the procedure, but these settle fully after 2-3 days.
HOW LONG DO THE RESULTS LAST?
The skin condition continues to improve for 2-3 months after the initial treatment, with the anti-ageing effects lasting around 6 months to a year, depending on age and lifestyle.
I HAD A PRP TREATMENT IN THE PAST, BUT DID NOT SEE ANY IMPROVEMENT- WHY?
There can be a number of reasons why a PRP treatment may not work. Lifestyle factors , underlying health or medical conditions and the rate of ageing process always play a role.
A common reason for disappointing results is not using enough plasma for the area treated. 3-4 mls of Platelet Rich Plasma may be enough to treat a localised area of hair loss but it is definitely not enough for the full head or to treat the full face and neck.
Another important consideration is the technology used. The treating physician must understand the underlying science of the procedure.
Not all blood components are desirable in an injectable PRP treatment. Cells present in our blood can trigger both healing (beneficial to the skin) and inflammatory processes (harmful to the skin in the long term), so the choice of the PRP technology that separates the cells is hugely important.
The ideal plasma for PRP injections should contain a high concentration of platelets that promote healing and stimulate the release of growth factors. The concentration of Red Blood Cells and Neutrophils (antagonists of the healing process) should be very low.
In my clinic I use Cellenis PRP System. It has been shown by independent studies to have the highest concentration of platelets and eliminating virtually all pro-inflammatory cells from the PRP in its preparations. As a small added bonus, the Cellenis PRP system operates at a neutral pH of 7, which is painless and comfortable to the skin.
IS PRP THE RIGHT TREATMENT FOR ME?
PRP is a medical procedure and should only be performed by trained medical professionals. When you come in for your consultation, I will take a careful medical history, we will discuss your goals and then decide on the best course of action.
If you are interested to find out more, book a consultation – we will talk through any questions you might have and determine if PRP treatment is the best for you.