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Variables in the manufacture of PRP

There are many variables in making PRP. Read on to find out more.

Variables in the manufacture of PRP

PRP


In simple terms, PRP is regarded as a suspension of plasma containing a high concentration of platelets. PRP is formed by the process of centrifugation or the spinning of blood.


PRP is made by separating the liquid (plasma) from the solid (red cells) parts of blood (red cells) by spinning the blood in a centrifuge.


As red cells are larger and heavier than platelets, they settle in the bottom of a tube, whereas the plasma floats on top.


Red cells can counter the beneficial effects of PRP and should be removed as much as possible.


The therapeutic benefits of PRP therapy are not solely dependent on the number of platelets.


Other factors that are thought to affect the quality of PRP are outlined below.


YOUR FACTORS


Your age - platelets reduce by about 10% as you age.


Whether you are male or female - platelet numbers tend to be higher in females than males.


What you eat - some foods, such as ginger or even sugar, make your platelets function less well. A macrobiotic diet is felt to be beneficial to people with low platelet levels.


Medication affecting platelets, such as aspirin or blood-thinning drugs


PRESENCE OF RED CELLS


Red blood cells are known to be harmful or toxic when present in PRP.


Systems that remove blood completely are, therefore, much better than those that don't.


WHITE CELLS


There are three main types of white bacteria and virus-fighting cells in the blood.


Monocytes and lymphocytes are good and support healing and regeneration.


Too many granulocytes can make PRP less effective by causing inflammation.


PRP tube systems, such as those manufactured by Regenlab, remove the harmful granulocytes automatically.


Similarly, too many white cells can be easily as harmful.


CONTENTS CONTAINED IN YOUR PLASMA


This is the liquid or straw-coloured part of your blood and the components used in PRP.


The photo below shows blood spun in a centrifuge with a layer of plasma above.





Plasma contains over 300 other active substances.


THE CENTRIFUGE AND SPINNING PROCESS


PRP is prepared by spinning your blood in a centrifuge.


How the blood is spun to separate the layers can make a big difference to the quality of your platelets.


Spin speed - the lower the spin speed, the less damage there is


The angle of centrifugation - a point of contention is that a horizontal system is marginally better than one spun at an angle. We have both.


Spin-time - less time spent in the centrifuge produces better PRP


Centrifuge G force - high G-forces during PRP centrifugation can damage platelets. A system that is gentle on the platelets will damage them less.


THE WAY THE BLOOD IS TAKEN


Time taken to get blood - blood that is spun straight away is better than blood left for one or two minutes before centrifuging.


This is more important for PRF as the blood will start to clot as soon as it is taken (see The difference between PRP and PRF) 


ANTICOAGULANTS


Blood taken without an anticoagulant needs to be used within 30-45 minutes before it starts clotting. 


This is not so important for PRP, which uses an anticoagulant to stop the blood clotting.


TOURNIQUET


Blood is taken from an arm vein by applying a tight band or tourniquet to make the vein more visible.


In theory, blood taken using a tourniquet applied too tightly to the arm (to make the veins visible during blood taking) or left on too long can also cause trauma to the platelets and activate them prematurely - so their growth factor content is less.


NEEDLE SIZE


Needles used to take your blood that are large allow blood to be taken a lot easier and cause less damage to the blood as it flows into the test tube.


Small needles slow the flow of blood causing more turbulence, trauma and early platelet activation.


THE TEST TUBE


Test tubes used to process your blood are highly specialised and need to meet rigorous safety standards to ensure you are not injected with contaminants.


Some test tubes contain invisible coatings formed during the manufacturing process and form a froth when shaken. These tubes should not be used.


We only use certified, safe and “coating-free” phlebotomy tubes.


EXPOSURE TO AIR AND OXYGEN


Maintaining complete sterility during the preparation of PRP is vital during each stage, from taking blood to centrifuging and injecting.


Saying that infection rates are very low regardless of the system used (partly because the plasma contains bacteria-fighting white cells).


Closed systems such as RegenLab are theoretically safer than those that can be exposed to air. Air or oxygen also activates platelets.


METHOD OF ACTIVATION


Historically, PRP was activated by adding calcium if an anticoagulant had been added. This is now thought to be unnecessary. The activation step also reduces the amount of growth factors released and accelerates the formation of a “growth factor inhibiting” clot.


SUMMARY


As highlighted, the end PRP depends on multiple factors. The purest form of platelets is those without any additives. Quality control, however, is very operator dependent.


REGENLAB PRP


Systems such as RegenLab take this variability away and meet all the industry standards in what is essentially regarded as a manufacturing process.


PRP produced by RegenLab has


High numbers of platelets (>80% are recovered)

High platelet quality

Full plasma recovery with no loss of growth factors or fibrinogen

96% of harmful, inflammatory granulocytes are removed, leaving beneficial lymphocytes and monocytes

99.7% of red blood cells removed 


This end product is the same each time. And the system is closed, meaning less air contact and completely sterile.

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