PRP for a possible extension of female fertility?
An unfulfilled desire to have children accompanies many (one in seven) couples and single women. For some it is the timing that has not been right, for others there may have been financial reasons why the desire to have children has not been tackled lately.. There are also women who have difficulties getting pregnant for biological reasons, such as low AMH levels or ovulation problems.
In view of the fact that family planning and the birth of the first child tends to take place later, many couples and single planners are looking hopefully for methods and alternatives that can lead to their fulfillment of their child wish — even at an “advanced” age or with limited ovarian function. Researchers are already exploring the novel method using platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for ovarian rejuvenation to record results.
What is ovarian rejuvenation with PRP?
Besides well-known methods, such as classical IVF, ICSI or insemination, there is also a less researched method: ovarian rejuvenation with PRP. This ovarian rejuvenation refers to a procedure that attempts to achieve “ovarian rejuvenation” with the help of platelet-rich plasma in order to increase the chances of successful fertilization if necessary. The method can help women suffering from premature ovarian failure or to try to improve their function .
How does ovarian rejuvenation with PRP work?
Ovarian rejuvenation is performed with the help of PRP (platelet rich plasma) injections. The method with injections of the patient’s own platelet-rich plasma is used not only for reproductive purposes, but has also been used in other areas of medicine for quite some time. Be it for injuries (wound healing), surgeries, cosmetic procedures or ovarian rejuvenation: PRP is said to stimulate the growth of cells as well as stem cells in the particular tissue into which the PRP is administered. Female ovaries are said to be able to produce eggs again with the help of PRP.
Further research is needed to define the exact mode of action of PRP .
For whom can ovarian PRP rejuvenation be suitable?
- Women over 35 years of age with low fertility, oocyte reserve and low AMH level (Determine your AMH level from the comfort of your own home)
- Women under 35 years of age with low AMH levels and low oocyte reserve
- Menopausal or perimenopausal women under 50 years of age
- Women with premature ovarian failure (POF) .
PRP treatment for ovarian rejuvenation: When & How:
The start of PRP treatment for ovarian rejuvenation can take place in women with periods (regular or irregular) between the beginning of the period to the 10th day (maturation of the follicles). For women without periods it is possible at any time.
Usually, the process begins with preliminary discussions and a consultation appointment with an appropriate specialist. This is followed by preliminary examinations (so-called anamnesis, ultrasound, blood tests). For the preparation of the PRP, a blood sample is taken and the platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is then obtained in the laboratory by centrifugation. The injection of platelet-rich plasma is performed under anesthesia and is injected into the ovaries.
How do you know if it has worked?
To monitor and measure changes in hormone levels, regular examinations take place after the procedure. Positive results may be expected if the AMH level is increasing while the FSH, LH, estradiol levels are decreasing in return. This may indicate that the oocytes are developing.
It is important to note that even with supposedly “positive” measurements, one should not assume a guaranteed pregnancy. Other factors can influence natural conception and make pregnancy more difficult.
Side effects of PRP
Regarding PRP application in reproductive medicine, neither long-term nor short-term negative effects could be observed in studies, since the patient’s own blood is used and the PRP growth factors should not pose any risk . In a short period of time immediately after the procedure, mild pain may occur in very rare cases, but are usually be short-lived .
Research on ovarian rejuvenation still needs to be expanded
In a 2019 study, women with premature ovarian failure achieved a natural pregnancy after ovarian PRP treatment after previous
failed . The patients were women who had not had a period for more than a year at the time of the study, had experienced failed IVF treatments, and wanted to test the platelet-rich plasma technique on their ovaries.
While medical research on ovarian rejuvenation with PRP is already underway, there are not yet many scientifically meaningful statistics on the method’s exact chances of success. However, successes following treatment with PRP have already been observed and tracked. One should keep in mind that treatments with PRP are still relatively new in reproductive medicine. Therefore, it is important to note that further research studies and investigations are necessary and purposeful for medical statements on success prognoses as well as on the detailed mode of action of the method of ovarian rejuvenation.
Social freezing: success rates
What is the ideal age to freeze my eggs? This is an often asked question in the context of social freezing. A simplified answer would be that it is generally better to freeze at a younger age than at a later age. However, it is not quite that simple.
At Fertilly, we have made it our mission to accompany couples (homosexual and heterosexual) and singles on the way to fulfilling their child wish. In doing so, it is important to us to create transparency in the area of fertility services, to provide information and knowledge on the topics of pregnancy and fertility and to help you to find the most suitable Fertility Center. Through cooperation with first-class Fertility Centres and clinics in Europe, enquiries about Fertilly are given preferential treatment. This means that our patients avoid the usually long waiting times and get appointments more quickly.
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2. 8. Schmitz, JP, Hollinger, JO. The biology of platelet-rich plasma. J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2001;59(9):1119–1121.
4. Pantos, Simopoulou et al. A Case Series on Natural Conceptions Resulting in Ongoing Pregnancies in Menopausal and Prematurely Menopausal Women Following Platelet-Rich Plasma Treatment, 2019