Platelet Rich Plasma for Hair Loss?

Posted by William Gaunitz on Tue, Aug 30, 2016 @ 07:30 AM

Whether it’s genetic, due to an underlying medical disorder, dietary deficiency, stress, or simply poor hair care; hair loss is a major concern these days.

In a world of so many hair loss treatment options, PRP is becoming increasing popular as celebrities and physicians are using it more and more to improve hair density and reverse the impact of thinning hair. Find a PRP Medical Center

Platelet Rich Plasma has already been used for many years by sportsmen like Tiger Woods and Rafael Nadal to treat chronic injuries and sprains. But now PRP therapy has been shown success in the hair loss arena as well.  Let us throw some light on what the therapy is and how it can help.

What is PRP?

PRP, platelet rich plasma, autologous platelet gel, platelet concentrate (PC) Platelet_Rich_Plasma_draw_for_hair_growth.jpgand plasma rich in growth factors (PRGF) are all names for an extremely effective and therapeutic option that has long been used to encourage healing of muscle, ligament and tendon injuries.

You’ve heard the name PRP or Platelet Rich Plasma, but what is it? It’s a product of your very own blood and is critical to blood clotting.

Blood contains the major components;

  • Plasma
  • Red blood cells
  • White blood cells
  • Platelets

To explain, the term ‘platelet rich plasma’ means blood plasma richer in platelets as compared to normal/usual blood, which naturally makes it richer in growth factors by 5-10 times. Healthy blood has cell ratios of around 6% platelets; however platelet rich plasma has a concentration of 94%.

Platelets play a key role in hemostasis and are a natural source of growth factors [1]. Here’s the list;

  • Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
  • Insulin-like growth factor (IGF)
  • Platelet-derived angiogenic factor (PDAF)
  • Transforming growth factors (TGF-beta)
  • Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)

Bottom line: PRP is the autologous blood with above-baseline concentration of platelets as well as at least seven growth factors (responsible for the PRP therapeutic effect). 

History of Platelet Rich Plasma

Growth factors have been in discussion since 1900’s, with the PRP therapy’s use reported as early as 1970’s. Around the year 2000, the treatment extended to orthopedics, with the first ever successful human study claiming a positive role of PRP in chronic tendon issues.

With advancement in technology and smaller more portable machines available, physicians can now create a PRP from a small sample of patient’s blood. Further clinical studies are now being conducted to establish the role of therapy in various aspects.

One such study reported a significant reduction in hair loss in a team of eleven patients suffering from androgenic alopecia related hair loss resistant to treatment with minoxidil and finasteride. After the fourth session, 9 out of 11 patients showed improvement in hair growth. 

How is the PRP used?

The procedure of using PRP for hair loss is as simple. The 20- minute procedure involving the following steps results has shown excellent results for thousands of patients;

  • Patient’s blood is drawn while scalp is being numbed
  • Blood is centrifuged till it separates into three layers (Platelet Poor Plasma, Platelet Rich Plasma, and Red/White blood cells.)
  • Hard spin/first spin separates  platelet poor plasma from the red fraction and PRP
  • Soft spin/second spin separates red fraction and PRP depositing latter at the bottom of the tube
  • In some cases before application, an activator (topical bovine thrombin and 10% calcium chloride) is added to elicit the clotting cascade, and resulting in the formation of platelet gel.
  • the PRP at a concentration of 3-5 times is injected into the scalp at various and specific points using a fine needle.
  • additional micro needling the area after injection of PRP how shown to improve results.

Bottom line: the treatment has a lack of adverse reactions and totally natural looking results. 

How does it Work? How does the therapy trigger hair growth?

Apart from the factors mentioned, platelets tend to secrete/release a number of substances that also aid in wound healing and other regenerative processes. The growth factors activate stem cells in the bulge area of follicles, encourage the growth of existing hair, as well as the encourage the formation of microvascular networks improving circulation and eventually providing with the nutrients required for hair growth. 

Is PRP Therapy Effective?

 YES,  PRP has shown promise for hair loss, but clinical studies have proven the effectiveness of the therapy in several other aspects,such as:

  • PRP is most effective in chronic tendon injuries
  • Acute sports injuries involving muscles and ligaments
  • During certain surgeries to encourage healing
  • Enhances bone regeneration [2] 

Benefits of PRP for Hair lossPRP_for_hair_loss_2.jpg

PRP therapy for hair loss has gained immense popularity recently due to the following benefits:

  • A non-invasive technique, no down time
  • Autologous (it’s your own blood)
  • Minimal adverse reactions (chances of developing adverse reactions is less because it’s your own blood)
  • Usual shows result in as little as 3-4 months
  • Very quick procedure lasting less than one hour

Typically 2-3 sessions are performed in the desired area within the 4- 6 months. Then booster treatments are performed every six months to one year thereafter.  Other hair loss treatment therapies like LLLT, minoxidil, nutritional supplements can be added for even better results. 

Who is a Candidate?

For individuals with less than ten years of hair loss or those who have thinning hair from androgenic alopecia, are going to be the best candidates.  (male pattern baldness) [3]. 

Where to get the PRP Procedure? 

To learn more and to find out if you are a candidate for PRP for Hair Loss Treatment, call Evolution Hair Loss Institute at 480-222-4247 for your free consultation.

Evolution Hair Loss Institute offers the latest in PRP for hair loss along with Low-Level Laser Therapy for maximum results. All PRP procedures are performed by Dr. Brooke Blumetti DO, Board Certified Dermatologist.

Fly-in packages are available for those who do not live in the Phoenix metro area.

Tags: platelet rich plasma, prp, prp hair loss