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J Extra Corpor Technol. 2006 Jun;38(2):174-87.

Platelet-rich plasma and platelet gel: a review.

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Department of Extra Corporeal Blood Management, Catharina Hospital, Eindhoven, The Netherlands.


Strategies to reduce blood loss and transfusion of allogeneic blood products during surgical procedures are important in modern times. The most important and well-known autologous techniques are preoperative autologous predonation, hemodilution, perioperative red cell salvage, postoperative wound blood autotransfusion, and pharmacologic modulation of the hemostatic process. At present, new developments in the preparation of preoperative autologous blood component therapy by whole blood platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and platelet-poor plasma (PPP) sequestration have evolved. This technique has been proven to reduce the number of allogeneic blood transfusions during open heart surgery and orthopedic operations. Moreover, platelet gel and fibrin sealant derived from PRP and PPP mixed with thrombin, respectively, can be exogenously applied to tissues to promote wound healing, bone growth, and tissue sealing. However, to our disappointment, not many well-designed scientific studies are available, and many anecdotic stories exist, whereas questions remain to be answered. We therefore decided to study perioperative blood management in more detail with emphasis on the application and production of autologous platelet gel and the use of fibrin sealant. This review addresses a large variety of aspects relevant to platelets, platelet-rich plasma, and the application of platelet gel. In addition, an overview of recent animal and human studies is presented.

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