PRP for Hair Loss
Hair loss can have a profound impact on your self-confidence. Men and women alike struggle with varying degrees of alopecia, but Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy offers a non-surgical way to reduce and reverse hair loss. PRP treatment is a three-step process that uses the platelet-rich plasma found in your blood to promote natural hair growth in the scalp. PRP therapy has been used for decades for its healing abilities on muscle, tendon, and ligament injuries, and its cosmetic uses offer high satisfaction for patients with alopecia.
How Does PRP for Alopecia Work?
It’s theorized that PRP has cell-renewal properties that stimulate the scalp to encourage hair growth. PRP therapy increases the blood supply to hair follicles and may also increase hair thickness. Most patients require 4-6 treatments that are spaced several weeks apart. Once you reach your desired results, maintenance treatments can be done every few months.
PRP for hair loss treatments involve three steps:
- The Blood Draw: Dr. Karlinsky-Bellini will draw some of your blood, which is typically taken from the arm. Your blood is put into a centrifuge that spins the blood to separate the platelet-rich plasma.
- Centrifuge Isolation of PRP: The centrifuge separates the fluids in the blood and takes around 10-20 minutes. The goal is to isolate the PRP from the red and white blood cells, which is a yellowish or straw-like color.
- PRP Scalp Injections: The isolated PRP is injected into precise areas of the scalp to stimulate hair growth.
Dr. Karlinsky-Bellini may perform the Hair Pull Test before each PRP treatment session. The hair pull test evaluates the extent of hair loss by pulling a bundle of hair in four scalp locations, and if more than 10 percent of hairs are removed, the hair pull test is positive for alopecia. The test is repeated regularly to monitor hair loss progression. A 2014 study on PRP for hair loss found a “significant reduction in hair loss was observed between the first and fourth injection.”
PRP for hair loss is a cost-effective, simple, and non-surgical treatment that can provide a substantial improvement in hair growth and thickness. There’s little to no downtime involved, though some patients wait a day to return to work. Using your own blood reduces certain risks, but infection, blood vessel or nerve injury, and adverse reaction to local anesthetic can occur. If you are a heavy smoker, take blood thinners, or have a medical condition such as cancer, liver disease, diabetes, chronic infections, or low platelet count, PRP therapy may not be right for you.