Updated: 02/26/2013 11:29 AM KSTP.com By: Naomi Pescovitz
We all want to look our very best. But could the answer to a young, beautiful face be right under your own skin?
Some cosmetic surgeons think so with a procedure called the "Vampire Facelift." The process requires a patient's own blood.
Blood is drawn and spun in a centrifuge. Platelet rich plasma, or PRP, settles on top. Combined with another filler, the plasma is injected into a patients face.
Twin Cities Cosmetic Surgeon Dr. Roger Hogue and his wife, Lori Hogue, RN, invited a KSTP crew to watch the procedure at their Maple Grove clinic.
"That's what people are looking for. They are looking for something that's not going to be, where they have to cut and have a big procedure," said a 49-year-old patient, who did not want to share her name.
Hogue compares PRP it to fertilizer for your skin.
"As you get older, you begin to deplete and damage the skin tissues themselves, sometimes they just need to be rejuvenated and nothing better than just having your own body do it," Hogue said.
Hogue combines the plasma with another filler in a process called micro-needling. It is like tattooing, without the ink.
"It's like the body healing itself," Hogue said. "Stem cells, various types of blood cells, they've been healing us ever since we were little and they will continue to do so," Hogue said.
Not all doctors are sold.
"I just don't think that it's been time tested," said Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon Dr. Jess Prischmann.
Prischmann does not offer the Vampire Facelift to her patients.
"I don't think that they've been able to show that injecting plasma into the face actually stimulates the skin the behave younger over the course of time," Prischmann said.
Hogue says the Vampire Facelift could phase out with new technology, but even if it's just a fad:
"Salaciousness sells, that's how it is," Hogue said.
"I like to blaze the trail for other people, laughs," the patient said at the end of the procedure.
The Vampire Facelift ranges from about $1,600 to $2,400 hundred dollars, depending on the amount of filler used.
Downtime can last up to four days.