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PRP versus PRF

There is some controversy about which system is best, PRP or PRF. Read our ultimate guide.

PRP versus PRF

PRP v PRF


The benefits of platelets in promoting wound healing and tissue regeneration have been at the centre of scientific interest for many years.


There is debate about whether PRP is better than PRF and vice versa. 


PRF and PRP are indicated for:


• Collagen production

• Skin tightening

• Improvement of fine lines and wrinkles

• Treatment of acne scars

• Improvement in skin tone and texture

• Minimising enlarged pores

• Improvement in skin pigmentation

• Platelets can also be used to treat stretch marks and hair loss or alopecia.


These treatments are very similar, with a few key differences. Let’s take a look at both treatments.


How do platelet treatments work?


Both PRP and PRF require your blood to be placed into a centrifuge. The blood is then processed to separate the blood into distinct layers.


Both PRP and PRF work by stimulating new cell growth and collagen production.


When your body is injured, the platelets in your blood activate and release growth factors


These growth factors start the wound-healing process by creating new skin cells, collagen, elastin, and blood vessels.


When injected using a needle or medical needling device (microneedling), this results in firmer skin and reduced fine lines, wrinkles, and dark spots


So what is the difference?


Publications reporting one has superior effects than the other may be subject to bias.


From a safety point of view, how your platelets are prepared should be a significant factor in your decision.


One reason why we have moved to RegenLab as our go-to platelet preparation.


How are platelets obtained?


PRP is prepared by a process known as differential centrifugation. In differential centrifugation, the acceleration force or spin speed is adjusted.


The important variables in harvesting platelets are:


  1. How the blood is spun

  2. How long is the blood spun

  3. The centrifugal forces used

  4. The angle of centrifugation

  5. The presence of anticoagulants

  6. The fibrin content.


See also: Variables in the manufacture of PRP.


PRP 


Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) was introduced by Marx et al. in 1988.


PRP systems historically used high spin speeds and long spin times.


Due to both variables, the quality of platelets is argued to be lower as they are thought to be damaged more.


Intact platelets preserve their growth factor concentration, which is the key to the success of platelet treatments.


In theory, the more growth factors that are released, the greater the benefit for facial rejuvenation.


But this also depends on the system used; not every PRP is the same.


PRF


PRF systems spin the blood for shorter times and with lower centrifugal forces.


The content of fibrin is also reported to be higher.


So why is fibrin important?


Fibrin is one of the key end products of clotting and is a mesh holding the wound together, forming a clot. It is what eventually stops a wound from bleeding when you are cut.


In aesthetics, fibrin acts as a matrix which allows platelets to release regenerative growth factors which stimulate collagen production and promote healing under the skin.


The results are plumper skin and improvement in fine lines and wrinkles with no risk of allergic reactions.


Fibrin content


PRF stands for Platelet Rich Fibrin. Meaning an emphasis on fibrin content.


The fibrin scaffold allows platelets to attach, similar to a fishing net.


In effect, bound platelets activate more slowly and over a longer period.


Anticoagulants and platelets


Another notable difference is the use of anticoagulants.


With PRF, no anticoagulant is used during the processing of the blood. 


PRP treatments use anticoagulants, preventing blood from clotting too quickly during the injection.


To keep the platelet product as natural as possible, PRF tubes do not have any anticoagulant within them.


This reportabley creates a more stable fibrin matrix that signals the platelets to release their growth factors more slowly. Although the evidence for this is weak and controversial.


Modern PRP systems such as RegenLab also use much lower forces.


So is PRF better?


While the above suggests PRF is slightly better than PRP, the short answer is no.


Our clinic uses PRP and PRF, and we have invested heavily in both technologies.


And we have thoroughly researched both.


The evidence shows that both have the same amount of growth factors and other cells that produce a regenerative environment to rejuvenate the skin.


Arguably, the advantages of RegenLab PRP overall outweigh the marginal benefits of PRF.


Such as


  1. Infection control (they have a closed system)

  2. and eliminating variation in production.


So which treatment is right for me?


Both PRP and PRF are effective if you have uneven skin tone, hyperpigmentation, acne scars, or fine lines and wrinkles, or more advanced signs of aging.


They are alo highly effective at building volume (see Biofiller).


Using the RegenLab CellularMatrix™ system, we can combine hyaluronic acid filler with PRP in one easy step.


You should see an improvement in the texture of your skin and a reduction in scarring and dark spots within a month.


For optimal results, they require 3-4 treatments, 4 weeks apart. 


For maintenance, platelet treatments requires at least 1-2 treatments, 6 months apart. 

Results may differ if you combine PRF with other treatments like microneedling.


Because PRP and PRF use your own blood, both treatments are extremely safe with a very low chance of adverse reaction.


If you have further questions about these treatments, or any of our treatments, you can our clinic on 07798765623 ot visit our PRP pages on our website.


References


Choukroun, J.; Diss, A.; Simonpieri, A.; Girard, M.O.; Schoeffler, C.; Dohan, S.L.; Dohan, A.J.; Mouhyi, J.; Dohan, D.M. Platelet-rich fibrin (PRF): A second- generation platelet concentrate. Part IV: Clinical effects on tissue healing. Oral Surg. Oral Med. Oral Pathol. Oral Radiol. Endod. 2006, 101, e56–e60.


Choukroun, J.; Diss, A.; Simonpieri, A.; Girard, M.O.; Schoeffler, C.; Dohan, S.L.; Dohan, A.J.; Mouhyi, J.; Dohan, D.M. Platelet-rich fibrin (PRF): A second-generation platelet concentrate. Part V: Histologic evaluations of PRF effects on bone allograft maturation in sinus lift. Oral Surg. Oral Med. Oral Pathol. Oral Radiol. Endod. 2006, 101, 299–303.


Ghanaati, S.; Mourão, CF.; Adam, EH.; Sader,R.; Zadeh, HH.; Al-Maawi, S. (2019). The role of centrifugation process in the preparation of therapeutic blood concentrates: Standardization of the protocols to improve reproducibility. 2. 41. 10.4103/GFSC.GFSC_15_19.


Grecu AF, Reclaru L, Ardelean LC, Nica O, Ciucă EM, Ciurea ME. Platelet-Rich Fibrinand its Emerging Therapeutic Benefits for Musculoskeletal Injury Treatment. Medicina (Kaunas). 2019 May 15;55(5):141. doi: 10.3390/ medicina55050141. PMID: 31096718; PMCID: PMC6572609.


Miron RJ, Fujioka-Kobayashi M, Hernandez M, Kandalam U, Zhang Y, Ghanaati S, ChoukrounJ. Injectable platelet rich fibrin (i-PRF): opportunities in regenerative dentistry? Clin Oral Investig. 2017 Nov;21(8):2619-2627. doi: 10.1007/ s00784-017-2063-9. Epub 2017 Feb 2. PMID: 28154995).


Miron RJ, Chai J, Fujioka-Kobayashi M, Sculean A, Zhang Y. Evaluation of 24 protocols for the production of platelet-rich fibrin. BMC Oral Health. 2020;20(1):310. Published 2020 Nov 7. doi:10.1186/s12903-020-01299-w.





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