Platelet Rich Plasma/Stem Cell Therapy
Some of the most exciting advances in the field of medicine are coming in the area of stem cell medicine. Stem cells are something that we all have, and they have the potential to become anything they want to be. Over the last 10-15 years, we’ve made tremendous strides in harvesting and using these stem cells to achieve a variety of goals. Most of these therapies fall under the heading of “Platelet-Rich Plasma”.
PRP, or Platelet-Rich Plasma, is a solution made by drawing your blood and using a special process to separate out your own stem cells and healing elements. These are then injected back into the places they are needed most. Not all PRP is created equal, however. At Desert Wellness Center we use the Terumo Harvest kit, which offers the highest platelet yield on the market ensuring the most effective treatment possible. If you’ve had a PRP treatment, but the injected solution looked yellow (and not red) it was a very weak treatment!
For Joint Pain, this is often called PRP-Prolotherapy. The solution is injected into joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments to treat pain. It has the potential to repair partially torn tendons, ligaments, meniscus, and cartilage, as well as relieve the inflammation and pain of osteoarthritis (even bone-on-bone). It is particularly effective for old injuries that never quite healed completely, or repetitive use injuries like tendonitis. It is also invaluable for women who’ve suffered with lower back and sacroiliac pain since delivering a baby. These unstable and/or inflamed joints are strengthened by PRP, allowing you to do the things you’d like without pain or weakness.
Hair Restoration is one of the areas in which PRP really shines. The solution is injection into the scalp (with anesthetic), and has been shown in multiple research studies to halt hair loss, and spark the growth of new hair. This is your own hair, looking completely natural and leaves none of the scarring you may have with hair transplants. This can be used to slow hair loss associated with aging, to reverse alopecia, or to combat the hair loss associated with hormonal change and hypothyroidism. It can even be injected into the eyebrows if they are thinning.
Facial Rejuvenation is the area which really launched PRP into the “limelight”. Also called the Vampire Facial, the PRP solution is used to replenish collagen, restore lost volume, firm sagging skin, smooth fine lines and wrinkles, and lighten age/sun spots and scarring. The face is numbed with an anesthetic and the solution is injected where needed (including the lips, if desired), and then paired with microneedling to treat the whole face. The stem cells will be working to reverse aging in your skin for up to 7 months, and many patients report feeling as though the treatment took 10 years from their faces!
Because the solution is simply a concentrated version of your blood, there is no possibility of allergic reaction. The injections are slightly inflammatory (a sign that healing is taking place) for a few days, and then the inflammation resolves leaving the healing to continue for up to 7 months. Procedures are done same-day, in-office, and generally take about 45 minutes.
If you would like to discuss whether PRP is right for you, schedule a free 15-minute Meet & Greet with Dr. Cronin.