Hyaluronic acid and PRP combo improves QoL in scleroderma patients
Italy: Filler injections of hyaluronic acid and platelet-rich plasma are effective for the treatment of facial skin lesions in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc), a recent study in the journal Arthritis Research & Therapy has indicated.
According to the study, filler injections of hyaluronic acid and platelet-rich plasma can be an efficient local therapeutic alternative for scleroderma patients. The treatment significantly improved patients' quality of living.
Systemic sclerosis is a systemic connective tissue disease characterized by endothelium damage, fibrosis, and subsequent atrophy of the skin. Perioral fibrosis produces a characteristic microstomia together with microcheilia that causes affects daily activities of the patients such as eating and oral hygiene, making their life difficult. To address the lack of specific and effective therapies in SSc, Giuliana Guggino, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy, and colleagues aimed at evaluating the response to filler injections of hyaluronic acid together with platelet-rich plasma.
The study included ten female patients aged between 18 and 70 years. Each patient was treated with three filler injections of hyaluronic acid and platelet-rich plasma at an interval of 15 to 20 days. Follow-up check-ups were recorded 1, 3, and 24 months after the end of the treatment. During the therapy and the subsequent follow-up, the mouth's opening, freedom of movement of the lips, and skin elasticity were evaluated.
Key findings of the study include:
- After the treatment, patients had achieved good results already after the first injection and the improvement was maintained in the following months, up to 2 years.
- In particular, 8 (80%) patients showed a greater mouth's opening and increased upper lip's thickness during 1-month follow-up and maintained these results after 2 years (maximum mouth's opening T0 47.61; T3 49.23; T4 48.60. Upper lip's thickness T0 4.20; T3 4.75; T4 4.45).
- Distance between upper and lower incisors (T0 27.05; T3 29.03; T4 28.14), inter-commissural distance (T0 49.12; T3 51.44; T4 50.31), and lower lip's thickness (T0 3.80; T3 4.85, 5.10; T4 4.25) were increased in all of patients in 1-month follow-up, keeping these benefits after 24 months and having a significant increase of skin elasticity 1 month after the end of therapy.
"These treatments could be considered as a starting point of regenerative therapy in SSc patients even if the small sample size will require to confirm our results in a largest cohort of patients," concluded the authors.
The study, "Hyaluronic acid and platelet-rich plasma, a new therapeutic alternative for scleroderma patients: a prospective open-label study," is published in the journal Arthritis Research & Therapy.