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PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) therapy is becoming popular, especially in the sports and cosmetic worlds. Studies suggest that most people would rather pass on surgery and go for the quick, non-invasive procedure with little to no side effects and a faster healing time. Sounds great right?
A small amount of blood is taken directly from the patient and placed in a centrifuge where it is spun to separate the platelets, white blood cells, and red blood cells. The concentrated platelets are then taken and injected back into the patient in the problem area. Our bodies use these platelets to heal themselves. This speeds up recovery time and allows little to no risk of your body rejecting it since it is not foreign.
What is it being used for?
There are many uses for PRP therapy, but it‘s becoming especially popular amongst athletes and celebrities.
Aging sports star Kobe Bryant, is still playing in the NBA at age 37, as he has since he was drafted back in 1996. Typical basketball players peak in their mid-twenties and start to decline in performance around 27. Kobe had undergone several surgeries with little to no results. Finally, he flew to Germany twice in order to have PRP therapy. He reported afterward, “I feel a lot stronger and a lot quicker.”
Amidst all the media attention Tiger Woods was getting for his girlfriends and car crashes, he had blown out his ACL. When his LCL wasn’t healing properly he made the decision to have PRP injections. Following his PRP therapy, he resumed training and happened tear his Achilles. He again had PRP injections and was able to heal fast enough to get back on the golf course to earn millions of dollars and win many awards.
All over the news and media recently, there have been reports of the “blood facial”, “vampire facial”, and “Dracula therapy” that Kim Kardashian underwent on her reality TV show. Of course it’s all very dramatic, as reality TV always is. But these PRP injections, which are drawn from the arm and injected into the face, stimulate collagen production. This, in turn, reduces wrinkles, leaving a younger, firmer appearance. PRP injections have also been shown to help heal acne scars.