While we use both Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) and Platelet Rich Fibrin (PRF) in our practice, there are specific differences between the two solutions, and specific uses for each. For more information on what PRP is and what it is used for, check out our article here.
What is Platelet Rich Fibrin?
Like Platelet Rich Plasma, to obtain Platelet Rich Fibrin, we first must start by drawing blood, collected at the time of service, from the client receiving the treatment. Also like PRP, the blood is spun in a centrifuge to separate the PRF from the red blood cells. From here, the processes of obtaining PRP and PRF may be similar but have distinct differences that allow for different results. To spin PRF out of a sample of blood, the sample is spun at a lower speed than that which is used to obtain PRP. Because it is spun at a lower speed, the sample does not separate into distinct layers, allowing some of the white blood cells and stem cells to remain within the platelet layer that is collected for use in treatments. Also because of the lower spin speed, there is less trauma to individual blood cells. Overall, there are more healing factors within PRF than are typically seen within PRP.
One other major difference between Platelet Rich Fibrin and Platelet Rich Plasma, is that there is no anticoagulant used when collecting PRF, like there is when PRP is collected. Because no anticoagulant or additives are used, 1) PRF is made up solely of the patient’s blood; on its own it is a 100% natural skin care treatment, 2) during the blood clot formation, fibrin is created which boosts the healing factors in the solution, and 3) the fibrin clot allows for a slower, longer release of healing and growth factors and cytokines, which also boost results. Think of PRF as your very own, natural, customized, rejuvenation serum!
Sounds amazing! What is PRF used for?
PRF is great at stimulating healing. The blood solution helps build tissue, stimulate stem cells, and improve collagen and elastin in the skin. It helps repair skin on a cellular level. PRF is great at improving skin texture, fullness, and fine lines.
Platelet Rich Fibrin is great on its own and as a combination therapy (in addition to other services). PRF injections are commonly used to help fill under eye hollows, creases around the mouth, and in the temples.
PRF Injections and Dermal Fillers
One amazing way to use PRF is by mixing it with dermal fillers. While PRF often takes time to develop visible results, dermal filler results are immediate, achieving the look you want right away. And, while over time filler breaks down and the results diminish, the PRF is working, healing, and boosting collagen in the background, developing a long lasting, natural, and rejuvenated look. It is a winning combination that accomplishes both immediate and long-term results. PRF with fillers is the best of both worlds!
Am I a good candidate for PRF and what can I expect from the procedure?
Platelet rich fibrin injections are safe for most people. PRF treatments are usually completed over multiple sessions, the number of which will be determined based upon the patient and their needs. In preparation for the procedure, it is important to avoid any blood thinning medications for two weeks prior to the injections, and alcohol for three days prior to the treatment.
The length of each procedure is dependent upon the treatments being administered, but the process of extracting the PRF and preparing it for injection takes 20-30 minutes at the beginning of the appointment, after the blood is drawn at the start of the appointment. Local anesthetic is also administered at the treatment site prior to injection to prevent any major discomfort during the procedure.
The recovery from PRF injections depends on the individual’s treatment plan and genetic makeup, but mild bruising and swelling is to be expected. It’s important to take it easy for about two weeks after the procedure.