The Perfect Pair: Light Therapy & PRP
Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections
In recent years, doctors have learned that the body has the ability to heal itself. Platelet-rich plasma therapy is a form of regenerative medicine that can harness those abilities and amplify the natural growth factors your body uses to heal tissue.
What is Plasma, and what are Platelets?
Plasma is the liquid portion of whole blood. It is composed largely of water and proteins, and it provides a medium for red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets to circulate through the body. Platelets, also called thrombocytes, are blood cells that cause blood clots and other necessary growth healing functions. Platelet activation plays a key role in the body’s natural healing process.
What is Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP), and what are PRP injections?
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy uses injections of a concentration of a patient’s own platelets to accelerate the healing of injured tendons, ligaments, muscles, and joints. In this way, PRP injections use each patient’s own healing system to improve musculoskeletal problems.
PRP injections are prepared by taking anywhere from one to a few tubes of your own blood and running it through a centrifuge to concentrate the platelets. These activated platelets are then injected directly into your injured or diseased body tissue. This releases growth factors that stimulate and increase the number of reparative cells your body produces.
Ultrasound imaging is sometimes used to guide the injection. The photographs below illustrate a PRP injection into a patient’s torn tendon. The ultrasound guidance is shown at the left, and the injection is shown at the right.
PRP harnesses the body’s own rejuvenating powers to stimulate hair growth naturally. The treatment involves drawing a small amount of blood from the patient’s arm. This blood is then spun in a centrifuge until the plasma is separated and growth factors and stem cells are extracted. This plasma, complete with growth factors and stem cells, is then injected into the patient’s scalp, stimulating hair growth.
Red Light/Blue Light therapy uses light energy to stimulate hair growth. Red light/Blue Light therapy works using light delivered at specific therapeutic wavelengths within infrared and red-light spectrums. The energy from these lights stimulates the hair follicles so that they are constantly in the growth, or anagen, stage. This results in thicker, longer, and healthier hair.
Red light (630 nm) therapy stimulates ATP (cellular energy) production to stimulate hair follicle cells. It also increases blood flow to the hair root, which delivers more nutrients to the hair follicle cells. The increased blood flow is also thought to help flush away the damaging waste products that may affect hair growth.
Near-Infrared light (880 nm) therapy, which is an invisible light energy, promotes collagen and elastin production. It penetrates deeper into the scalp to help reduce inflammation, which causes thinning of hair.
Blue light (420 nm) therapy is especially effective for acne, penetrating molecules within the skin that cause P. acnes bacteria to form. These molecules react