PRP Procedure: How Does It Work?

March 1, 2024
Zak Ibrahimi
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PRP is a procedure that uses concentrated patient blood to accelerate the healing of chronic tissue injuries, such as sprains, tendinitis, and some milder forms of arthritis…so, how does it work?

In this blog, we will be discussing the process of how PRP therapy works, the common problems it can treat, its benefits, as well as the important aftercare tips to consider.

How Does PRP Therapy Work?

Together with erythrocytes, or red blood corpuscles, and leukocytes, or white blood cells, platelets, also known as thrombocytes, are one of three types of cells found in our bloodstream. White blood cells fight infection, red blood cells transport oxygen and carbon dioxide, and platelets help the body heal damaged tissues by enabling clotting. Platelets are the cells that enable your body to halt the bleeding, seal the wound, and give the cut on your finger time to heal.

Growth factors, which are proteins, are what give platelets their ability to carry out various functions. Without platelets, your body would not be able to manage inflammation, heal tissues, or produce new skin because it would not be able to signal to go into “healing mode.” Furthermore, platelets promote blood flow and boost collagen synthesis, two processes that are critical to the body’s healing process.

The goal of PRP therapy is to increase platelet power. An injured body part may benefit from up to five times the growth factors found in normal whole blood by means of platelet collection and concentration into a single injection. The best part is that the blood is drawn from your own supply, which removes the possibility of rejection due to mismatch, infection, contamination, or other issues.

What Is the PRP Therapy Process?

PRP therapy for hair and skin does not require any preparation, unlike blood tests, for which the patient is usually advised not to eat or drink for up to 12 hours prior. It is only advised that the patient stay well hydrated beforehand, since a more hydrated body will facilitate the practitioner’s ability to take blood.

It will be necessary for you to cease using corticosteroids or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) treatments, including ibuprofen (Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve), up to one week prior to PRP therapy, and not to start using them again right away. They will obstruct PRP therapy and can even reverse any gains.

The steps involved in PRP therapy are:

Step 1: Collect the patient’s own blood.

For the process, less than two ounces, or between 10 and 50 millilitres, are needed. A collection needle is put into an arm vein, and the blood is collected in a little vial. The procedure is almost the same as giving blood for a blood test during PRP therapy.

Step 2: Centrifuge the blood.

A centrifuge is a fast-spinning apparatus. The red blood cells (erythrocytes), white blood cells (leukocytes), platelets (thrombocytes), and plasma (liquid) of the blood are physically separated by this motion.

Step 3: Process and collect the platelets.

Platelet-rich plasma can have up to five times the number of platelets per millilitre than regular blood, which has roughly 200,000 platelets per millilitre. Following this, a syringe containing three to seven millilitres of platelet-rich plasma will be collected and given right away.

Step 4: Inject the PRP into the desired site.

Finally, the PRP is prepared for injection or application to the treatment area. Depending on the specific condition being treated, the PRP may be injected directly into the affected area (such as joints for osteoarthritis or specific areas of the skin for facial rejuvenation) or applied topically during certain procedures (such as microneedling for skin rejuvenation).

What Aftercare Is Necessary for Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy

After undergoing Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy for cosmetic procedures such as facial rejuvenation, PRP for skin or hair restoration, you should follow the correct aftercare measures. While specific instructions may vary depending on the type of procedure performed and individual patient factors, common aftercare practices for PRP therapy in cosmetic procedures may include:

Avoiding Sun Exposure:

Protect the treated area from direct sunlight and ultraviolet (UV) radiation for a specified period following the procedure.

Use sunscreen with a high sun protection factor (SPF) and wear protective clothing, hats, and sunglasses when outdoors.

Gentle Cleansing:

Cleanse the treated area gently using a mild, non-abrasive cleanser and lukewarm water.

Avoid scrubbing or rubbing the skin vigorously, especially in the immediate post-treatment period.

Moisturising:

Apply a gentle, hydrating moisturiser to the treated area as needed to help maintain skin hydration and barrier function.

Choose a moisturiser that is suitable for your skin type and does not contain potentially irritating ingredients.

Avoiding Harsh Products:

Avoid using harsh skincare products, exfoliants, or chemical peels on the treated area for a specified period following PRP therapy.

Wait until the skin has fully healed before resuming the use of any products containing retinoids, alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), or beta hydroxy acids (BHAs).

Avoiding Smoking and Alcohol:

Refrain from smoking and limit alcohol consumption following PRP therapy, as these habits can impair healing and may negatively impact treatment outcomes.

Avoiding Blood Thinners:

If applicable, avoid medications and supplements that may thin the blood or increase the risk of bleeding, as directed by your healthcare provider.

Common examples include aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and certain herbal supplements.

Minimising Physical Activity:

Limit strenuous exercise, heavy lifting, and activities that may increase blood flow to the treated area for a specified period following PRP therapy.

Light physical activity, such as walking, may be encouraged unless otherwise advised by your healthcare provider.

Patience and Compliance:

Be patient and allow sufficient time for the full effects of PRP therapy to become apparent.

Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions carefully and adhere to recommended aftercare practices to achieve the best possible results.

It’s important to discuss specific aftercare instructions with your healthcare provider before undergoing PRP therapy for cosmetic procedures, as recommendations may vary based on factors such as the type of treatment performed, your skin type, and any underlying health conditions. If you have any questions or concerns about your aftercare regimen, don’t hesitate to contact us for guidance and support.

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