PRP Therapy Combined with Fillers (aka as Vampire Facelift®)
The original Vampire Facelift® is achievable combining the use of fillers with PRP serum. The fillers provide an instant fill or volume correction and the PRP immediately initiates a skin regeneration process. Patients can see and feel the effects immediately as their skin becomes smoother and firmer. The filler products we use in conjunction with the PRP serum are Restylane or Juvederm Ultra Plus. Both are hyaluronic acids. The use of PRP with fillers prolongs the effective filler correction for three to six months longer than when fillers are used alone.
Doctors at the University of Rome achieved positive results when PRP platelet rich plasma in combination with hyaluronic acid was used as a temporary skin substitute in aiding healing of acute and chronic open wounds of the foot and ankle.9
A 2016 study in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology recorded:
- A series of 94 female patients with varying degrees of facial aging signs were treated with PRP and hyaluronic acid.
- Average age was 53, youngest being 48, oldest 63. Average number of injections were about 3 and one-half.
Patients were asked to rate their personal satisfaction with their skin texture, pigmentation, and sagging. In addition, the overall results were rated by three independent physicians and the patients themselves. The outcomes were peer-reviewed, and correlations between the degree of the aesthetic scores and the number of injections were explored.
- There was a statistically significant difference in general appearance, skin firmness-sagging and skin texture according to the patients’ before and after applications of PRP.
- A statistically significant correlation was found between the number of injections and overall satisfaction.12
PRP Therapy Used as Stand-Alone Skin Rejuvenation
Patients who don’t want or need fillers can benefit from PRP to improve fine lines and improve the way their skin looks and feels. Think of PRP treatment as a NATURAL alternative to fillers. Your body is creating the corrections desired.
Areas ideal for stand-alone PRP therapy include:
- Full Face (when no filler needed)
- Neck (especially horizontal necklace lines)
- Crow’s Feet
- Under the eye Fine Wrinkles
- Acne Scars
In a review study, doctors at Weill Cornell Medical College say that the vast majority of studies examined show a significant and measurable effect on cellular changes, wound healing, and facial esthetic outcomes with use of platelet preparations, both topical and injectable.10
In a study from Egypt, doctors took Forty-five patients with atrophic acne scars and randomly assigned to 3 equal groups:
- Group A received intradermal injection of PRP,
- Group B received chemical reconstruction of skin scars,
- and Group C was treated by combined skin needling and PRP. Each patient underwent 3 sessions at 2-week interval.
The 3 groups showed statistically highly significant improvement in the degree of acne scars after treatment No major adverse effects were observed in the studied groups.
This is the first study to use intradermal injection of PRP alone for the treatment of atrophic acne scars. The 3 modalities showed a promising efficacy and safety in the treatment of atrophic acne scars.11
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The same PRP healing elements that I have written about throughout this website have been successfully applied to cosmetic medicine. The utilization of Platelets and other growth factors found in your blood, trigger new collagen production. This results is tauter, smoother and more youthful skin. When combined with dermal fillers; shape, color, texture and volume are all restored with the outcome lasting approximately 18 months.
In this article we will discuss how Platelet Rich Plasma, or “The Vampire Facelift,” can produce a more natural and youthful facial appearance than traditional surgical facelifts.
Although there can be a place for a surgical facelift, such procedures are not necessarily a panacea or cure-all to the concerns of the aging face. Cosmetic surgery when needed can remove excess skin and make the person appear younger. However, a surgical facelift can actually contribute to a face collapse as the skin stretches tighter against the bone making the person look skeletonized.
The Vampire Facelift provides non-surgical solutions to the challenges of maintaining a youthful appearance in aging faces. The procedure addresses:
- Facial wrinkles.
- Facial volume correction such as the thinning of the dermis (volume loss) seen with weight loss.
- Improve texture of the skin and rejuvenate the complexion by using the combination of Platelet Rich Plasma therapy (PRP) and dermal fillers.
- Changes in skin color. As we age we develop dull, greying skin because of reduced blood circulation in the face. The Vampire Facelift helps restore healthy natural looking glowing skin.
- The loss of skin elasticity.
- The slow collapse of the facial structure and subsequent droopiness in the shape of the face.
The PRP used in the Vampire Facelift® is the same as that used for years at Darrow Wellness to effectively speed joint, tendon and tissue repair. Our extensive experience using PRP to stimulate tissue repair and regeneration combined with our vast experience injecting fillers makes the Vampire Facelift® a cinch, with impressive results!
Growth Factor Production Known Effects
- Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF) – Stimulates fibroblasts to secrete collagenase to degrade the matrix during the remodeling phase. Stimulates keratinocyte and fibroblast proliferation.
- Transforming Growth Factor- Promotes angiogenesis, up-regulates collagen production and inhibits degradation, promotes chemo attraction of inflammatory cells.
- Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) – Endothelial cells promote angiogenesis during tissue hypoxia.
- Fibroblast Growth Factor (FGF) – Promotes angiogenesis, granulation, and epithelialization via endothelial cell, fibroblast, and keratinocyte migration, respectively.
- Platelet-Derived Growth Factor (PDGF) – Attracts macrophages and fibroblasts to zone of injury. Promotes collagen and proteoglycan synthesis.
- Interleukins, Macrophages, keratinocytes, endothelial cells, lymphocytes, fibroblasts, osteoblasts, basophils, mast cells – Activates fibroblast differentiation. Induces collagen and proteoglycan synthesis.
- Colony Stimulating Factors – Stimulates granulocyte and macrophage proliferation.
- Keratinocyte Growth Factor – Fibroblasts stimulate keratinocyte migration, differentiation, and proliferation.
In 2002, Doctors at Yale University discussed the use of PRP following plastic surgery.
- The response of living tissue to injury is a central component in the planning of all surgical procedures.
- The wound-healing process is typically divided into three phases (inflammatory, proliferative, and remodeling) and it is a complex process where many components interact to restore a wound defect.
- Platelets and their released growth factors are pivotal in the modulation of this entire process.
- Although several techniques may be used to achieve repair after initial injury, few initiate and actually accelerate tissue regeneration. Both platelet gel and fibrin glue (body glue) are effective hemostatic agents.
- Platelet gels, unlike fibrin glue, have a high concentration of platelets that release the bioactive proteins and growth factors necessary to initiate and accelerate tissue repair and regeneration.
- In particular, two growth factors that play a major role in platelet gels are platelet-derived growth factor and transforming growth factor beta, which significantly increases and stimulates the deposition of extracellular matrix (the “soup” that cartilage grows from).
- Platelet gels have global applications in surgery and are especially useful for the soft tissue and bony reconstructions encountered in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery. In these applications, their use has been associated with a decrease in operative time, necessity for drains and pressure dressings, and incidence of complications.1
This study followed similar research from doctors at Florida Atlantic University who tested “PRP” gel and fibrin glue to evaluate their effectiveness in stopping capillary bleeding in the surgical flaps of patients undergoing cosmetic surgery.
The types of surgical procedures included face lifts, breast augmentations, breast reductions, and neck lifts.
Capillary bed bleeding was present in all tested cases and effectively sealed within 3 minutes following the application of platelet gel and fibrin glue. 2 Clearly, PRP is a healer and has a place in cosmetic procedures.
Reversing sun damage
In 2003, doctors at Scripps-XIMED Medical Center began looking at growth factors in the repair of sun damaged skin. This is what they wrote:
- Though surgical procedures may be very effective, the associated healing time and potential risks have spurred the development of non-surgical treatments.
- There has also been an increasing depth of knowledge regarding wound healing and its control by growth factors as well as its modulation by the topical application of growth factors.
The objective of this study was to determine if the twice daily application of a combination of multiple growth factors (such as those found in PRP) to photodamaged facial skin results in any evidence of improvement after 60 days.
- Eleven of 14 patients showed clinical improvement in at least one facial area. The peri-orbital (around the eyes) region showed a statistically significant improvement.
- There was a decrease in the depth and number of textural irregularities or fine lines.
- Biopsies revealed new collagen formation and thickening of the epidermis by 27%.
- Eight of 14 patients felt their wrinkles were improved, while 12 of 14 felt their skin texture was improved.
The application of a mixture of topical growth factors may stimulate the repair of facial photodamage resulting in new collagen formation, epidermal thickening and the clinical appearance of smoother skin with less visible wrinkling.3
In this study, doctors from Turkey evaluated the efficacy and safety of intradermal injection of PRP in the human facial rejuvenation.
Twenty women ranging in age from 40 to 49 years were enrolled in the study. PRP increases dermal collagen levels not only by growth factors, but also by skin needling. PRP application could be considered as an effective (even a single application) and safety procedure for facial skin rejuvenation.4
A paper from China notes that needling can change the aging state of skin possibly by strengthening the activity of fibroblasts in the skin and by increasing the content of soluble collagen.8
In a 2012 paper from the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary’s department of plastic surgery. Doctors wrote how platelets created collagen, created a fat layer, and created circulation in skin. In this study:
Patients were injected with a Platelet-rich fibrin maxtrix in the deep dermis and immediate subdermis of the upper arms.
- Findings from examination supported the clinical observation of soft-tissue augmentation.
- As early as 7 days after treatment, activated fibroblasts (healing cells) and new collagen deposition were noted and continued to be evident throughout the 10 week course of the study.
- Development of new blood vessels was noted by 19 days; also at this time, intradermal collections of adipocytes and stimulation of subdermal adipocytes were noted (fat layers of skin).5
In 2010, doctors in Italy wrote in the Journal of drugs and dermatology that “Face and neck revitalization with PRP is a promising easy-to-perform technique in face and neck rejuvenation and scar attenuation.”6
In 2014, doctors in Turkey wrote that in their patient studies, there was statistically significant difference regarding the general appearance, skin firmness-sagging and wrinkle state of the patients before and after three PRP applications.7