Platelet-rich plasma has been used for years in regenerative medicine practices to help people accomplish everything from recover from injuries to accelerate hair growth in areas of baldness or thinning. The answer to whether it’s the best treatment for you specifically relies on a few specifics, however, although there is evidence that many people can benefit from PRP for hair loss. Here’s what to know about this procedure and whether it can help you re-grow your hair without the need for surgery.
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is a specific part of your blood plasma that contains more growth factors, platelets, and proteins that doctors can isolate and place directly into tissue that needs regeneration or healing. It’s the part of the blood that helps close wounds, fight infections, and heal damaged tissues. When used for hair loss treatment, PRP helps hair follicles by encouraging the development of new blood vessels and cell turnover to produce thicker, more resilient hair.
During a PRP treatment session, your doctor will draw a small amount of blood, similar to a standard blood draw, and then put it in a centrifuge. This devices spins up and separates the different components of your blood from one another, including platelet-rich plasma. This purified, separated fluid is then loaded into a syringe or prepared some other way to then be injected or applied to the area of hair loss.
Because the compounds used are already present in your own body, there’s little risk for something like an allergic reaction with PRP treatments. The benefits from PRP appear over the course of several weeks, and your doctor may recommend coming in for multiple treatment sessions.
Various doctors and dermatologists offer PRP for hair loss with different methods. Some administer the PRP with injections into the scalp, sometimes alongside hair transplant surgery. Other providers use PRP topically after a hair transplant procedure or after microneedling the affected area. This makes measuring the effectiveness of PRP therapy for hair growth difficult, but not impossible.
In general, most studies of PRP for hair loss find that there was at least some effectiveness, although large, uniform trials have yet to be performed to help back it up.
Another consideration that some PRP studies don’t address is the type of baldness or hair loss. In general, most people with bald spots or balding scalps tend to have male pattern or female pattern baldness. However, other alopecias (hair loss diseases) have causes that aren’t treatable with PRP. This means that a thorough evaluation of your hair loss in addition to your family history with baldness is key to understanding how best to treat hair loss.
If you’re concerned with thinning hair or the formation of bald patches throughout your scalp, PRP is a promising treatment, but not always one that works for everyone. Bald spots that haven’t grown hair in years may not be treatable, which is why we encourage anyone concerned about their hair loss to schedule a consultation soon after they become concerned with their appearance. Call or contact Sunrise Dermatology online to find out your options for hair growth treatments with PRP today.