A systematic review of the safety and effectiveness of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for skin aging


Injection of platelet concentrates for the treatment of aging skin has gained popularity. The objective was to systematically assess the evidence regarding the safety and effectiveness of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for reducing the visible signs of aging. Cochrane Library, MEDLINE (PubMed), EMBASE, and Scopus were searched from inception to March 2019 for prospective trials and case series assessing PRP for skin aging in 10 or more patients. Twenty-four studies, including 8 randomized controlled trials (RCTs), representing 480 total patients receiving PRP, were included. Based on physician global assessment, injection PRP monotherapy was shown to at least temporarily induce modest improvement in facial skin appearance, texture, and lines. Periorbital fine lines and pigmentation may also benefit. Adjuvant PRP accelerated healing after fractional laser resurfacing. Although the degree of improvement was typically less than 50%, patients generally reported high satisfaction. It was limited by heterogeneity in PRP preparation and administration, and lack of standardization in outcome measures. PRP injections are safe and may be modestly beneficial for aging skin. The evidence is most convincing for improvement of facial skin texture. The persistence of these effects is not known. More high-quality trials with sufficient follow-up are needed to optimize treatment regimens.

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Departmental Research Funds, Dept of Dermatology, Northwestern University.

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Correspondence to Murad Alam.

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Maisel-Campbell, A.L., Ismail, A., Reynolds, K.A. et al. A systematic review of the safety and effectiveness of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for skin aging. Arch Dermatol Res 312, 301–315 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00403-019-01999-6

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  • Platelet-rich plasma
  • PRP
  • Aging
  • Photoaging
  • Rejuvenation
  • Systematic review
  • Safety
  • Effectiveness