Tag: anti-aging

PRP Injections: Healing with Platelet Rich Plasma

Healing from injury, disease, or dysfunction is an incredibly complex process – yet we take it for granted as an expected result of unseen biological forces.

Content with standing idly by, most assume that we cannot use the tools we now have available to take proactive and decisive steps to enhance (or in some cases, begin) the healing process. If we are going to try and flip the script and take charge of our healing, it makes sense to start with the center of how the body heals physically  – platelets. 

Your platelets are one the first responders to injury. They are immediately drawn to the site and go to work releasing their granules filled with growth factors and an inflammatory cascade then ensues – kicking off the healing process. Growth factors, proteins, and various other substances released by the granules enable the body to heal, enable us to heal. Harnessing this innate power is easier than you think, and platelet-rich plasma injections (PRP) show incredible promise in the field of regenerative medicine. There is still a lot to find out about this cutting edge technique that has been used to remedy all kinds of cosmetic issues, musculoskeletal injuries, joint dysfunction, sexual dysfunction, and more, but you can bet you should at least consider looking into a treatment if you have any of these issues. Due to a current lack of standardization and consensus in the research, there is no definitive answer as to whether or not you as an individual should try PRP, or whether it will be effective for you and your unique issues. However, based on the incredible safety profile of PRP, it’s simple mechanisms of action, and the potential it has for healing various tissues, we recommend reading on and deciding for yourself. 

How PRP Works

When you break it down to the nuts and bolts, the functional properties of PRP are mainly based on the creation and secretion of the many growth factors that are released by platelets after activation.

Platelets (or more technically, thrombocytes) are the body’s first response to injury and they quickly arrive at the site of damaged tissue to begin their work clotting blood and releasing various growth factors and other substances needed for repair. Some of the major growth factors released by the granules within platelets include:

After a patient’s own blood is drawn, it is placed in a centrifuge and spun to separate the blood from the plasma and its constituents, then the concentrated plasma is then reinjected into the targeted tissues. This process creates a concentration of platelets up to 10x what is normally found in whole blood and with all this growth-factor power concentrated into one specific area in the body, the healing process is able to be kickstarted or enhanced greatly. 

It is important to note that a greater concentration of platelets does not necessarily mean better results!

Based on this incredibly straightforward (and yet, also complex) mechanism of action, it is easy to see why PRP may have the potential to change the way chronic pain, joint disintegration, wrinkles, erectile dysfunction, and many more disorders will be treated in the near future. Mechanisms aren’t the only impressive feature of PRP. In fact, there is plenty of clinical application for both musculoskeletal pathologies, as well as aesthetic use of PRP injections.

PRP may be instrumental in dealing with an incredibly pressing issue – one that impacts an estimated 50% of American adults. 

Musculoskeletal Restoration

PRP has been used extensively for the treatment of many musculoskeletal disorders but results have varied depending upon the individual and their specific issues. Research has concluded that PRP treatment can improve healing in soft tissues and bone – showing the most promise for afflictions like:

  • Knee osteoarthritis
  • Rotator cuff tears
  • MCL injuries

Unfortunately, there currently exists a lack of standardization amongst research techniques, effectively hindering any consensus from developing regarding the efficacy of PRP treatment. That hasn’t stopped those at the forefront of regenerative medicine from restoring tendons, ligaments, and joints at a fundamental level by releasing the potent growth factors available within PRP. To ensure the successful application of PRP for treating musculoskeletal dysfunction or degradation, a skilled practitioner will often utilize an ultrasound to guide the procedure. This technical prowess, as well as a thorough screening process to verify that PRP will be effective for an individual, is key to the successful application of a platelet-rich plasma treatment. 

As PRP treatment advances and becomes more widely utilized, more and more benefits have begun to emerge – many of which are entirely backed by research and have been proven effective by actual application.

PRP & Aesthetic Rejuvenation

PRP and Aesthetics

Taking into consideration the fact that the term rejuvenation can be used as a vague and generic defining characteristic, let’s start by clearly explaining exactly what we mean by it.

Rejuvenation is “the action or process of making someone or something look or feel better, younger, or more vital”. In this sense, PRP absolutely does rejuvenate tissues – allowing them to heal, and objectively improve based on a wide array of parameters. 

It is widely known that the stimulative effects of PRP on fibroblasts (cells that create collagen and other connective tissues), as well as its ability to promote the secretion of hyaluronic acid and Type I procollagen are just a few of the mechanisms by which these treatments are able to vastly improve both the appearance and health of skin. PRP has even been used to enhance sexual function in both men and women. Basically, there are few tissues found thus far that won’t respond favorably to the skillful application of PRP. Luckily, there is plenty of objective research supporting it’s aesthetic efficacy. 

In a systematic review of the cosmetic applications of PRP by Motosko, et. al., they concluded that platelet-rich plasma injections can reliably result in:

  • Improved skin texture
  • Color homogeneity
  • Increased firmness/elasticity
  • Increased volume
  • Enhanced dermal thickness
  • Reduced solar elastosis (sun damage)
  • Decreased wrinkles
  • Reduced severity of nasolabial folds
  • Minimized acne scars
  • Alleviated erythema
  • And last but not least, satisfied patients

Overall, the majority of studies fully support the use of PRP as a beneficial treatment for facial aesthetics. It is also important to note, in most studies that have a wide age group, there is no significant difference found in positive response rates between those of younger age, and subjects of an advanced age. This highlights the fundamental power PRP has to work with our bodies, not against them like many modern approaches to “healing” tend to do. Our need to try any means of augmenting the healing process becomes increasingly dire as we age, due to our growing inability to complete the complex processes involved in restoring our bodies. You can certainly say that the research behind PRP is promising, but it is no less rife with disagreements. 

No Standard Opinion

Without a doubt, the largest obstacle to PRP being entirely proven effective (or disproven), is a lack of standardization within the research. Methods of concentrating platelets can vary greatly, resulting in subjects essentially receiving different doses in different studies. Also, there exists great individual differences in platelet numbers on any given day, which means those disparities will need to be controlled for in future research. This field is evolving rapidly and a more evolved understanding of the complex interaction between the immune system and signals from injured tissues has been accompanied by an increase in the use of PRP therapy to help heal musculoskeletal injuries, kickstart the rejuvenation of skin, improve sexual function, and a whole lot more.

Other Healing Compounds

There are a few other items that are strong contenders with PRP for healing properties on the body. Thymosin Beta 4 (TB-500), and BPC-157 (Body Protection Compound) are two promising compounds that have proven to have some potential. Currently, you can buy bpc-157 injections through online telewellness providers, whereas TB-500 isn’t as accessible, unless purchased through less trusted sources with possible legality issues. Some peptides are likely to assist in the healing process as well. You can buy sermorelin injections, cjc-1295, and ipamorelin online, also through telewellness providers. Each of these items help to increase HGH levels in the body, which is essential to cell health.

Sermorelin & Ipamorelin

Nothing can be accomplished in the human body without a signal.

This signal can come in many forms, but it is often a hormone of some kind.

Our powerful hormones can be created from various kinds of molecules and they possess the ability to stop, start, enhance, or restrict the actions of various glands, tissues, organs, and systems across the body. Imagine that we were able harness this power to do the same thing – control processes throughout the body at will by introducing the signal(s) that we need.

Well, we live in an amazing time, because one of the more recent breakthroughs in the fields of biological signalling and anti-aging involves the harnessing of peptides to do just that. Therapeutic peptides (short chains of amino acids/fragments of proteins) originate from molecules that already occur naturally within the body, but we are now able to build and utilize them for a variety of purposes. Research and anecdotal reports are proving that certain peptides can effectively slow down the aging process, increase muscle mass, decrease body fat, reduce inflammation, heal the gut, and likely countless other potential applications still waiting to be discovered.

Two specific peptides that are brilliant examples of what modern medicine is able to do in order to slow down the aging process are sermorelin acetate (a.k.a sermorelin) and ipamorelin. These signaling molecules mimic two separate endogenous hormones, enabling them to stimulate the release of growth hormone naturally from the pituitary gland – and they are able to do so in a way that is safe, unique, and complementary with one another. This synergistic effect is exactly why practitioners and patients are experiencing incredible results by combining sermorelin and ipamorelin. This dynamic duo’s ability to work together will be the focus of this article but we will also cover how they differ from one another, the potential side effects of each, and who to trust with your peptide protocols in order to ensure that you are getting the highest quality products and services available.

Peptides have quickly positioned themselves at the forefront of individualized medicine and they may have the ability to drastically improve your health and quality of life. How peptides work in the body may seem like something out of a science fiction novel, but the research, mechanisms, and real world experiences of people all over the world are proving them to be anything but fiction. 

What Are Peptides?

It’s probably best we start with breaking down some more of the mystery that surrounds peptides. In this context, peptides are essentially just signalling molecules that have been derived from, or are compounds already found within the body.

Sermorelin and ipamorelin are both categorized as growth hormone secretagogues. Secretagogues are nothing more than something that promotes the secretion/release of a chemical messenger such as a hormone. In this case, they promote the production and secretion of growth hormone from the amazing little hormone factory in your brain called the pituitary gland. What is most interesting is that they are able to accomplish this task in vastly different, yet complementary ways. 

Sermorelin Mechanism of Action

Sermorelin stimulates the production and release of growth hormone in a relatively straightforward way – by mimicking growth hormone releasing hormone (GHRH).

You don’t need to know much about the endocrine system or peptides in order to successfully guess what GHRH does – it causes the release of growth hormone. GHRH is typically released from another location within your brain and then it travels to the pituitary gland where it is interpreted and acted upon. When GHRH is administered in the form of sermorelin however, the peptide flows through your entire circulation – binding to GHRH receptors in areas all over the body, but especially on the pituitary gland. Another important aspect of using sermorelin to stimulate growth hormone release is that it allows the body’s natural feedback (shutoff) mechanisms to function properly. Once sermorelin has stimulated a certain amount of growth hormone to be released, another hormone known as somatostatin kicks in, effectively shutting down the growth hormone release. Like we said, the mechanism by which sermorelin works in the body is pretty straightforward – ipamorelin on the other hand, will take a bit more explanation. 

Ipamorelin Mechanism of Action

Ipamorelin acts in an entirely unique way to stimulate growth hormone release. To fully understand it, we will need to quickly cover an entirely new hormone that we have yet to discuss named ghrelin.

Ipamorelin is able to mimic ghrelin in exactly the same way sermorelin is able to mimic GHRH. Although ghrelin doesn’t get as much attention as some of the A-list hormones like insulin, growth hormone, testosterone, and estrogen, it absolutely should be a household name due to its importance within the body. Only discovered in 1999, ghrelin has profound regulatory effects on your metabolism including increasing or decreasing hunger, inhibiting stored fat breakdown, and perhaps most importantly for this article, the release of growth hormone from the pituitary gland. Ghrelin is one of only three hormones which have the ability to regulate growth hormone release from the pituitary gland. First is GHRH (sermorelin or similar molecule), then there is somatostatin (which stops the release of growth hormone), and last but not least is ghrelin. Ghrelin is able to act upon the pituitary gland in this way because growth hormone is partially responsible for initiating the breakdown of stored body fat for use as energy, as well as preventing the breakdown of muscle tissue – among many other roles. 

Now that you have an idea of how ghrelin is able to influence growth hormone release, understanding how a peptide that functionally mimics ghrelin is able to initiate the release of growth hormone should be a pretty easy leap. Ipamorelin binds to ghrelin receptors on the pituitary gland, switching them on in the same way that ghrelin naturally would. These on-switches are completely separate from the ones that sermorelin activates, enabling them to work synergistically to accomplish the same task. Most importantly, they are able to do so with no effect on the rest of your body’s hormones. There is always one major factor which must be evaluated whenever you are considering any kind of anti-aging treatment however – whether the benefits outweigh the potential side-effects. Fortunately, in the case of utilizing sermorelin and ipamorelin, that choice seems to be pretty easy to make.

Side Effects of Sermorelin and Ipamorelin

Neither sermorelin or ipamorelin have many side effects that are likely to send anyone to seek help elsewhere in the fight against the aging process.

In fact, ipamorelin specifically is largely considered to be one of the safest and most effective peptide treatments available. Sermorelin has been known to cause mild side-effects for some people such as flushing, headaches, nausea, dizziness, and redness or swelling around the injection site. Ipamorelin’s possible side effects mirror that of sermorelin with headaches and nausea topping the list of adverse events reported from using the impressively safe peptide.

Both are typically safe and side-effect free when used in the doses prescribed by a qualified medical practitioner. Knowing what that dosage should be is yet another reason why it is important to purchase your peptides from a reputable source. Unsurprisingly, there really is no shortage of websites selling inferior anti-aging products containing little or no actual peptides or other beneficial compounds. That being said, starting a peptide protocol can be done online safely and easily with a bit of education first. 

Buy Sermorelin & Ipamorelin Online

Finding a reliable business you can trust comes down to a few things.

First, look for a website that requires you to speak to a medical professional to obtain your prescription. In order to buy ipamorelin or sermorelin online, you are required to have a prescription just like you would at any pharmacy. There are businesses that offer telehealth services like Ikon Health that are able to walk you through this entire process from the convenience of your smartphone. If the company doesn’t require a prescription, find one that does!

Second, look for a company that has a solid track record with customer feedback to back it up. If they are a reliable company, they will no doubt have testimonials from patients that have worked with them. Buying peptides online may have been a questionable endeavor in the past, but luckily the industry has evolved and there are now many companies that provide excellent service, products, and results. 

Should You Try Sermorelin & Ipamorelin?

Ipamorelin and sermorelin are just two of the many peptides that have earned an excellent record of safety and effectiveness. Those individuals who are looking for the physiological and psychological benefits of naturally increasing growth hormone should look no further than these two peptide treatments. If you are searching for more energy, an improved body composition, and to generally fight the aging process, a protocol combining these two potent growth hormone secretagogues is an excellent choice. Visit our website today or come into our location to speak with one of our staff to buy CJC-1295 or purchase Ipamorelin. Unlike most wellness clinics, at Ikon Health we know that tools like peptides, injections, and IV therapy are but only part of the big picture – making lasting changes will take time and effort!

Are Peptides the Future of Individualized Medicine?

Pioneers leading the evolution of health and wellness have declared peptides will have a major part in the “future of precision medicine”. They have certainly shown promise in both clinical research and practical application and yet, they remain largely misunderstood or unknown by medical professionals as well as the average person. To fully understand why they deserve to be considered as part of your anti-aging, performance, or general health protocol, you must understand how they work with our physiology, why they are superior to traditional options, and the potential they have to positively affect systems across the body. An in-depth explanation of the many peptides currently in use, their proven or potential benefits, dosing, application, and their history is well beyond the scope of this article. We seek to simply shed light on some misconceptions of what peptides are, foster a fundamental understanding of how they work, and why you might want to consider them as an adjunct or alternative therapy. Discussing peptides can be a little overwhelming at first – rest assured however, by absorbing some of the information that follows you will have a deeper understanding of why they have such a promising future in medicine.

What Are Peptides?

Peptides are nothing more than fragments of full proteins. Another way to look at them is as smaller sequences of amino acids (the building blocks of proteins), constantly created within our bodies to perform certain functions. They are found in every cell and every tissue and work away delivering messaging, triggering events, and everything in between. Biochemically they are actually very basic molecules that, once attached to a specific receptor, illicit a response at the cellular and potentially systemic level. Think of them as a key – each and every function within our body requires a key (or keys) to take place. Peptides are often this key, although there are different kinds of keys that our body uses to get the job done. Peptides are essentially signalling molecules with a highly specific task and purpose. Harnessing this ability allows peptides to be strategically used to increase performance,  speed healing of injuries, increase muscle growth, expedite fat loss, support immune function, prevent chronic disease, and potentially countless more uses that have yet to be discovered. Peptide’s specificity is how they are able to work with our physiology, not against it like most modern interventions. By identifying the key (peptide) that sets into motion a series of biochemical responses, with a desired result, scientists are able to recreate the key and apply it on a wide-scale.

Why Peptides May Be the Future

Although many drugs truly are beneficial or lifesaving, most come with a list of potential unwanted effects. This is because they often act throughout the entire body, influencing every cell in your body in various ways – some good, some bad. The active compounds within most medications make their way around your entire body, binding to receptor sites here and there while having to be filtered all along the way. It seems almost inevitable that there will be some side effects – these treatments simply aren’t always precise enough.

Perhaps this is why so many have embraced peptide therapies. In order to synthesize or create peptides, you need highly specialized equipment that is able to link molecules together without error. Some peptides such as growth hormone are nearly 200 amino acids in length – get them out of order and you have a completely different molecule. An error such as this can result in an entirely different response, or no response at all. This level of precision during assembly is then mirrored by the precise effects the peptide will have once it has been administered. Although it will pass through your circulatory system just like any other compound, peptides bind only to the receptors which they have been designed to target. BPC-157 (body protection compound) is a peptide commonly used to facilitate repair and recovery of tissues. Once in your system it will seek out specific signaling molecules that are released by the injured tissue(s). When it has found the biochemical bat-signal from injured tissue it goes to work, resulting in a quicker recovery process. BPC-157 has been shown to increase repair of muscle, tendon, intestines, bone, teeth, brain tissue, the cornea, and has profound effects on modulating the immune system.

GHRH’s and GHRP’s

Another excellent example of the ability peptides have to work synergistically with our own physiology comes from a few of the most commonly used categories of peptides on the available for anti-aging: GHRh’s (growth hormone-releasing hormones) and GHRP’s (growth hormone-releasing peptides). As you no doubt are aware, aging is essentially breaking down at the cellular level, causing us to be in an oxidative and catabolic state.. We battle decreased muscle mass (sarcopenia), dysfunctional mitochondria, lack of appetite, decreased immune function, a decline in libido. All of this along with depression, and many more unwanted effects that seem to inevitably come as part of the aging process. Much of this dysfunction can be largely reversed by the appropriate administration of GHRh (compounds such as Sermorelin, CJC-1295, Tesamorelin, and more). These compounds work to stimulate your anterior pituitary to release its own natural growth hormone, allowing you to avoid the potential side effects of the questionable use of exogenous growth hormone! Pair GHRh therapy with it’s sidekick GHRP (GHRP-2/6 and Ipamorelin, and more), which work primarily by inhibiting somatostatin (aka growth hormone inhibiting hormone). To fully cover the systemic effects of these two classes of compounds would likely take forever. For now, suffice it to say that they facilitate your own body’s release of growth hormone, mitigating or preventing the unwanted issues that are a result of or caused by aging.

When you understand that peptides are just stimulating the body to have a response it was already meant to have, you can see how they have the potential to positively impact the whole of our physiology. Overall, peptides and the therapies that they enable are an amazing avenue of research and eventually actual application. North America is certainly leading the charge in terms of researching and isolating specific peptides but we are nowhere near the front of the pack in terms of clinical application. Australia in particular has been performing clinical trials on peptides for over a decade now and the results speak for themselves.

Where should you get your peptides from?

Almost without exception, peptides that are purchased from the internet come from overseas and are potentially ineffective or worse, dangerous. Peptides sourced from overseas have been tested by researchers and shown to either be dosed ineffectively low, contain none of the actual compound it claimed, and/or have completely different compounds than it should. In order to ensure you are getting the product, dosage, and therefore the results you want, it is advisable to visit a licensed facility and have your peptide therapy administered by a certified professional. There are wellness clinics in most cities now that are able to walk you through the process as well as provide you with lifestyle, training, and nutritional guidance that will help enhance the positive results you can see and feel from peptide therapies. Another excellent option is to find a reputable telemedicine clinic that can walk you through the process of receiving a prescription over the phone and your actual products delivered directly to your doorstep – from a licensed pharmacy. Whether you are looking for anti-aging, performance, fat loss, muscle gain, or generally just want to feel better overall, there are protocols to get you headed in the right direction today!

Tri-Cities - Serving Kennewick, Richland, Pasco, and surrounding areas.