PRP (platelet rich plasma) is blood plasma containing a concentrated amount of platelets and other vital growth factors. Platelets are the most important part of the procedure, as they contain growth factors, bioactive and signalling proteins. The bioactive, or healing proteins, are what begin the repair and regeneration of tissues.
The signalling proteins attract stem cells to the desired area to assist in the regeneration of your tissues
Dr. Punam Bijlani, Consultant Plastic Surgeon at Mediclinic Dubai Mall, explains, “The idea is that injecting PRP into damaged tissues will stimulate your body to grow new, healthy cells and promote healing. Because the tissue growth factors are more concentrated in the prepared injections, the body’s tissues may heal faster.”
Stages of preparing PRP injections:
Here’s what to expect from a typical PRP injection process.
Blood is collected from the vein into a specialised vaccum blood collection tube.
The blood is placed into a centrifuge. This is a machine that spins around very quickly, causing the blood components to separate and an autologous platelet plasma is prepared.
Plasma is administered into the zone of treatment.
The PRP mechanism of regeneration in the body works in the same way and differs only in terms of its duration which depends on the characteristics of the structure of the tissues. Due to this fact, this method can be applied in different areas of medicine.
In dermatology and aesthetics
Dr. Myrna El Shareef, Specialist Dermatologist at Mediclinic Al Sufouh, says that “PRP has become a trending therapy in aesthetic medicine. Dermatologists and plastic and aesthetic surgeons are using the natural healing properties of platelets to improve the appearance and overall health of the skin.”
PRP injections trigger natural rejuvenation of the skin. The growth factors contained in the platelets stimulate the growth of collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid. As a result of the treatment, the skin acquires better structure, improved tone and elasticity.
Platelet rich plasma (PRP) skin rejuvenation treatment benefits:
- Collagen production
- Skin tightening and toning
- Reduction of fine lines and wrinkling
- Repair of acne damage and scarring
- Reduction of crows’ feet
- Reduction of dark circles under eyes
- Repair of sun damaged skin around the eyes
PRP injections are effective in treating androgenic alopecia which is also known as male pattern baldness. The platetet rich plasma is directly injected into the hair follicles to increase thickness or hair regrowth. Whilst not everyone is a suitable candidate, there is a high success rate in certain hair loss conditions including those of hereditary origin in men and women. PRP can be used in conjunction with other treatments to give patients the best possible results.
In orthopaedic and sports medicine
Regenerative medicine is a fast-growing field in orthopaedic sports medicine. Platelet-rich plasma contains multiple factors that have been shown to promote healing, hence its use in certain acute and chronic injuries.
Dr. Ahmad Yacoub, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at Mediclinic Dubai Mall, says, “Tendon and muscle injuries are common in elite and weekend athletes. Treatment of these injuries in both groups is rapidly evolving. Sports medicine patients are demanding better and less invasive solutions for all types of musculoskeletal disorders. In this context, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) has emerged as a potential solution."
Platelet rich plasma (PRP) is a promising treatment for various musculoskeletal injuries such as arthritis, tears and injuries of tendons and ligaments and diabetic foot ulcers.
PRP serves as a stimulant of regeneration process when administered into the cervical and vaginal mucous membranes. It triggers capillary growth, normalises the blood supply, metabolism and nutrition of tissues which leads to accelerated tissue restoration.
It can benefit in the restoration of the mucous membrane and elimination of inflammation and dryness associated with treating cervicitis, lichen sclerosus (LS) and eczema. LS affects the vulva and causes extensive scarring further causing progressive pruritus, dyspareunia, and genital bleeding. It has a considerable impact on the quality of life of affected patients by disturbing physical activity, sexual pleasure, and causing emotional and psychological problems. PRP restores the stricture of the membrane and eliminates dryness.
Platelets have been found to release around 35 growth factors that promote tissue regrowth, healing, and regeneration. This fact has been utilised by aesthetic gynaecologists in treatments such as vaginal rejuvenation and sexual dysfunction.
Dr. Virginia Midrigan, Specialist Gynaecologist at Mediclinic Dubai Mall, explains, “PRP use in aesthetic gynaecology is considered to be a revolutionary new nonsurgical outpatient treatment that helps improve both urinary incontinence and sexual dysfunction through using a woman's own growth factors.”
Aesthetic practitioners have used PRP for the regeneration of vaginal mucosa, muscles, and skin. After PRP injection, vaginal vascularity is increased, with a subsequent dramatic increase in sensitivity. Moreover, the ligaments and muscles supporting the urethra become stronger, alleviating urinary incontinence.
The beauty of the PRP technique is that it can be used as part of a multi-layered approach. Significant clinical outcomes can be obtained with concomitant use of other treatment therapies.