Micro-needling With Platelet-Rich Plasma: Is This Procedure For You? by Donna John
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) has been around for the past two decades and has been used to help athletes like Tiger Woods and Alex Rodriquez recover from injury. A few years ago, the “Vampire Facial” made headlines when micro-needling was added to the procedure offering a vibrant, smooth, flawless complexion, says board-certified Philadelphia plastic surgeon Dr. Kirk Brandow. The results were so great that cosmetic surgeons started to explore other parts of the body such as stretch marks on the buttocks, breast, arms, thighs and abdomen.
The procedure calls for blood to be taken from the patient, then put into a machine that separates the platelet-rich plasma from the blood. It is then spread over the face after the micro-needling is completed. The micro-needling is a process where a pen-like tool with several tiny needles at the tip is carefully guided over the affected area, making microscopic holes on both the outer and inner layers of skin. These holes are so small that they heal within a few hours. The process triggers a healing response in the dermis layer.
For stretch marks, doctors recommend micro-needling with PRP over any other treatment because the results are significant and the cost is about $1,000 per session. “Micro-needling with PRP is a combination that offers a fast, in-office option with excellent results and is less costly than lasers,” explains Dr. Brandow.
Dr. Brandow adds that the advantage of micro-needling with PRP over lasers is a lesser chance of scarring and skin discoloration. “Skin on the body is more susceptible to hyperpigmentation than on the face, making micro-needling is a safer option for ethnicities with varying skin tones," he says. "This is a big advantage over cool beam lasers, IPL or chemical peels.”