Since my training with Dr. Charles Runels, the “inventor” of the Vampire Facelift and Hair Regrowth procedures, last summer, I have performed many of these techniques on multiple patients with very good to great results. As the popularity of these procedures has increased with the Hollywood types and local Mainers alike, so has the medical research in this area to further understand the science behind the results.
I continue to review the medical literature for more information on these exciting areas of aesthetic medicine in order to share the background with you. I recently read an article in the Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery with an imposing title, but with exciting findings.
The title of the study, “Induction of Dermal Collagenesis, Angiogenesis, and Adipogenesis in Human Skin by Injection of Platelet-Rich Plasma”, is certainly a mouthful. However, it also quite valuable scientifically, and you have the good fortune of having me summarize it for you here, rather than having to read it yourself (not that you would necessarily choose to do so).
This study was undertaken to evaluate the cellular changes in human skin caused by the use of platelet-rich plasma injection. Volunteers had blood drawn and centrifuged to obtain platelet-rich plasma or PRP in the usual manner as I do here at Maine Laser Skin Care.
In this case, the PRP was injected into the skin of the upper arms of the subjects. Over the course of the next 10 weeks, biopsies were taken from the treated areas and then examined microscopically to observe any changes in the cells and tissues within those areas.
The results confirmed many of observations that we see here in our offices following the use of PRP in the face and scalp. As early as 7 days after PRP injection, cellular changes began, and continued over the course of the 10-week study. Fibroblasts, the cells that produce collagen, were found to be activated, and new collagen deposits were produced and seen.
After just 19 days, the researchers observed new growth of blood vessels into the injected area, in addition to the development of adipocytes, or fat cells. The collagen production, blood vessel development and fat cell stimulation all continued throughout the course of the study.
On the negative side, the study reported inflammation in the very early stages. However, this inflammation was noted as being very mild, and went away in just a few days.
In conclusion, this study showed that the injection of platelet-rich plasma into the skin stimulates a number of cellular changes that can be harnessed for medical and aesthetic purposes. Combined with previous animal and human studies, this gives us all a much clearer picture of the cellular and tissue effects of PRP and its potential uses, particularly in the facial and scalp areas.
This study goes a long way in the explanation of why we see improvement of the skin’s appearance and texture in areas treated during the Vampire Facelift. Other studies have shown that when platelet-rich plasma is generated by the specialized centrifuges we use for this purpose, growth factors and stem cells are concentrated up to 80-180 times the normal value within the blood. Therefore, the injection of this super-charged material harvested from your own blood can stimulate and rejuvenate your skin in ways that your skin did on its own when you were younger.
If you have any questions about whether the use of platelet-rich plasma would be appropriate for you, your skin or your scalp, give us a call at (207) 873-2158 for a free consultation. Also, I have multiple copies of Dr. Runel’s book, Vampire Facelift: The Secret Blood Method to Revive Youth and Restore Beauty, that I am still giving out FREE to those interested in reading more about this revolutionary procedure.