Platelet Rich Plasma in Portland

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) has been getting a lot of attention recently. Many professional including Tiger Woods, Minesota Twin’s All Star Pitcher Joe Nathan, Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu and Portland’s own Trailblazer guard Brandon Roy recently underwent PRP therapy for various joint injuries. While traditionally used for wound healing PRP has more recently been used for aesthetic treatments. Already a huge business in Asia and Europe, PRP therapy for reducing wrinkles and stimulating hair growth has been making in roads in the US.

Platelets are cells which circulate in the blood. They contain substances called growth factors that activate and rejuvenate cells in the body. While less that one percent of your blood contains platelets, it is possible to concentrate those platelets with a specialized centrifuge by a factor of 100.  Platelet enriched plasma contains several million more platelets, resulting in more growth factor release and more stem cell attraction compared to the normal wound healing process.  The concentrated platelets in PRP contain tremendous amounts of bioactive proteins, which include the growth factors PDGF and VEGF. These growth factors have been shown to initiate accelerated tissue repair, and have also been shown to have positive effects on skin rejuvenation. The growth factors, when released, promote tissue repair, capillary formation, and collagen production. We have been using PRP for joint repair at our clinic for about a year now and have recently started to use the procedure in aesthetics. We recently made a video of the procedure and started a website (www.portlandprp.com) to inform the public about this new procedure. I would love to hear what you think about the video (I edited myself).  Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question.

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10 Comments

  • Dr. Adam Sheck

    Reply Reply February 12, 2011

    Shannon,
    Sounds like very cutting edge work. You state that it’s good for joint repair, I’m curious about it’s efficacy on disks. I’ve got a few cervical herniations and wonder if it might be something to look into ?
    Thanks so much,
    Adam

    • Dr. Shannon Weeks

      Reply Reply February 15, 2011

      Dr. Sheck,
      We’ve treated a few people with disk herniations and have had great success. We’ve also seen great results with osteoarthritis. I feel it won’t be too long before PRP is considered first line medicine.

      • Dr. Adam Sheck

        Reply Reply February 15, 2011

        Thanks so much, anybody you’d recommend in Los Angeles for PRP?
        Adam

  • Allegra Sinclair

    Reply Reply February 15, 2011

    Hi Shannon,
    I have to admit I was afraid of the video at first because I’m rather squeamish but I survived! (smile) This is a fascinating treatment that may rejuvenate the skin. Leave it to a woman to focus on the anti-aging benefits. Thanks for making a complicated, new therapy understandable for the rest of us. Have a POWERFUL week! Allegra

  • Linnea

    Reply Reply February 25, 2011

    Hi Shannon,

    I think you did a great job on the video. Not being very knowledgeable on the subject, I’m wondering if this treatment is what we hear referred to as human growth hormone treatment or is that something else altogether? ~ Linnea

    • Dr. Shannon Weeks

      Reply Reply February 25, 2011

      Hi Linnea,

      Human Growth Hormone is not used to help with wrinkles and skin repair. PRP is not a hormone therapy, it is using your body’s own growth factor and stem cells to regenerate tissue wherever it is injected. It works wonders for healing joints and ligaments, but also does an amazing job of reversing the signs of aging in the skin and even restoring hair.

      Sincerely,

      Dr. Weeks

  • I know that Platelet enriched plasma contains several million more platelets, resulting in more growth factor release and more stem cell attraction compared to the normal wound healing process.

  • Very interesting. Since I am not a doctor I can not comment on this topic, but I wonder if this accumulation of platelets is natural for human beings

    • Dear Peter,

      The platelets occur naturally, concentrating them and using them therapeutically allows us to make use of the body’s own healing powers.

  • Zo

    Reply Reply December 30, 2011

    I have read through the EDS website that PRP might be helpful for my condition. Anything is worth trying. Being that this is a fairly new treatment, does any insurance (in my case Medicare) pick up some of the cost? Also, would you tell me what is the average price for each treatment?

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