Dr Noori Moti-Joosub, Dermatologist, Laserderm – Illovo
The use of PRP was initially started in athletes for certain tendon and muscle injuries. Tiger Woods and tennis star Rafael Nadal are amongst well-known atheletes to have used this procedure and attribute PRP to being able to return more quickly to competition. It is used as a regenerative therapy that uses the patients own blood to treat an injury.
The use of PRP has expanded into anti-ageing, treatment of scarring and hairloss as well as improving inflammatory skin conditions and the general texture and tone of the skin.
PRP has been used for over 2 decades and its uses have expanded and it has been established as a safe effective form of tissue and skin repair and rejuvenation.
Uses in dermatology:
Anti-ageing: by stimulation of the healing cascade, collagen is also stimulated and improvements seen in fine lines and wrinkles, skin texture and tone. This also potentiates the action of laser treatments, botox and fillers.
Scarring: By stimulation of the platelet healing cascade an improvement of scarring can be seen, however the best results are PRP in combination with laser therapy for scarring.
Hair-loss and balding: By stimulation of the hair follicles via platelets and growth factors, natural hair growth can be seen. Promising results have been shown in many patients. A treatment worth trying for a particularly distressing disease.
How does it work?
Platelet rich plasma therapy is the readministration of your own platelets to activate the body’s natural healing cascade for repair and regeneration in the area it is injected. High concerntration of platelets also stimulate the release of growth factors that further aid in tissue regeneration, collagen stimulation and overall wellness of the treated area.
This treatment involves sampling a small amount of the patients blood to centrifuge and concerntrate the platelets. Once ready the platelets are re-injected into the area treated to enhance healing and regeneration of the tissue. It is not only safe, but effective and hazard-free in the long-term.
At Laserderm we have felt that intra-dermal injections (into the dermis) are most effective in our skin treatments and we seldom use mesotherapy in our PRP treatments. The reason for this is that we believe the placement of the platelets should be into the layer of skin with the collagen and tissue to allow more effective regeneration of the skin and it would be less-effective in the top layers of the skin.
“No PAIN, no GAIN!” PRP therapy can be a painful procedure. A topical application of anaesthetic is usually required and oral analgesia can also be taken. This should be discussed with your medical practitioner prior to the treatment.
Generally it is a safe-procedure with no long-term implications.
How often does PRP need to be performed?
Anti-ageing: Younger patients < 35yrs – 6 monthly
Older patients > 35yrs – 3 monthly
… or as desired
Hair loss: 3 monthly
PRP treatments have revolutionized our practice offering patients of any age an effective, natural skin regenerative treatment. It has also offered a potentiated action for many other laser and injectable treatments. For balding patients it is showing promise with natural stimulation of dormant hair follicles. The use of PRP in dermatological diseases and aesthetic medicine is an exciting frontier and we are hoping to expand our use and hopefully achieve more success stories of its uses.