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Vampire Face Lifts - Eerie or the Next Big Thing?

August 10, 2012

If you are like the many women out there you want to look younger now with no downtime. Botox and other injections have long been the answer. Now there is a new anti-aging solution available - the vampire face lift. And yes, it does involve sucking blood.

What is a Vampire Face Lift?

The vampire face lift, also know as a vampire filler, is a nonsurgical, injectable filler procedure. The doctor first takes blood from the patient’s arm then spins it in a centrifuge to separate out the platelets in the plasma from the red blood cells. The platelets are then added to a fibrin mixture to create a new platelet-rich plasma (PRP). A local anesthesia is used to numb the injection sites on the face, then the mixture is injected into the desired areas to promote new collagen production.

Due to poor circulation and lack of oxygen, your skin, which was once youthful and vibrant, becomes loose, thin, and wrinkled with age. By replenishing the platelets, the circulation can improve and the rejuvenated blood can aid in new collagen growth. This PRP method, also called Selphyl, has been used by orthopedic surgeons for years to stimulate growth for tissue repair.



Dr. Paul Nassif, M.D., F.A.C.S., of Spalding Drive Plastic Surgery in Beverly Hills, CA, can be seen here performing a vampire face lift. He injects hyominic acids along with the patient’s own platelet rich plasma (PRP) into her face with no bruising and very little swelling. The procedure uses the PRP to jumpstart new collagen growth, and like Dr. Nassif says, “If we can stimulate collagen growth, we can generate fullness.”
 


With these vampire injections, the doctor must initially overfill the areas, making the filler appear bigger at first than the final results will be. The excess will go down after a day or two. The patient, however, will not realize the final results for about a month because it will take that long for the PRP to build up new collagen growth. Those final results should last up to a year without refills.

Is it for Me?

The vampire facial is best for those women who want to smooth out light wrinkles in small areas, such as crow’s feet and smile lines. Thin skin with an almost translucent quality really benefits from this instant flush of color. It is not ideal for all wrinkles, deep wrinkles require a filler capable of either producing more volume than is possible with Selphyl or inhibiting muscle movement as with Botox.

There is debate about whether Selphyl can be used to fill hollow cheeks in addition to reducing wrinkles. There have not been any proven clinical trials yet; however, the general assessment  now is that the cheek areas are too large for it to be effective.

Advantages

As with any injectable, Selphyl is very low risk with very little post-procedure down time. There is no chance of allergic reaction or rejection when using your own blood. And there is no bruising with fewer bumps around the injection sites than with synthetic fillers because the PRP is coming from your own body and is thinner than most injectables. You will instantly see the color and fullness return to your face. It also last longer than synthetic fillers - the results from Selphyl can last up to 15 months between fillers whereas dermal fillers generally need to be redone every 6 months.

Disadvantages

Injecting blood into the skin can cause itching, burning, or minor discoloration. Unlike other fillers used strictly to add volume such as to plump the lips, Selphyl cannot create volume in new places; it can only plump areas that used to be fuller. It can also be costlier than other injectable fillers, with prices ranging $1500 - $1800. See our financing page to learn more about payment options.

While most doctors do consider this to be a safe procedure because the technology has been FDA approved for orthopedic tissue regrowth, the FDA approval specifically for cosmetic application is still pending. There also have not been any clinical trials, and doctors have yet to realize any long term effects.

As with any new trend, people want to jump on board with the latest and greatest thing. When pertaining to cosmetic procedures, this is not always the best choice. Make sure that you do your research thoroughly because many doctors will not be well-versed in newer technology, and you will want to find someone who is highly specialized to make the right choice for you.

Learn more about other anti-aging options available -  non-surgical procedures like dermal fillers or Botox, or surgical procedures like a face lift





 
 


 
 

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