PRP Therapy for Hair Loss: Does it Work?
Next Health Staff | | 0 comments
Hair loss plagues millions of Americans, especially men, each year. Hair loss can take the form of bald spots across the scalp or a receding hairline as early as age 20. No matter your age or sex, hair loss can be disappointing and discouraging, especially if you experience hair loss while you’re still young.
But you don't have to necessarily accept your hair loss as permanent. Revolutionary treatments such as PRP for hair loss might be able to turn back the clock and help your hair grow back stronger and thicker than ever. Next Health offers PRP therapy for hair loss and other needs – let’s take a look at what this procedure involves and what you can expect when you sign up for an appointment.
Platelet-Rich Plasma Explained
Platelet-rich plasma or PRP is a combination of plasma and platelets. Plasma is the liquid part of blood, and it's absolutely essential for proper bodily functions. Platelets are specific types of blood cells primarily used to begin and/or accelerate the healing process.
More specifically, platelets are necessary so your body can clot injuries. For example, if you’re injured and receive a cut, platelets will quickly appear near the open wound to stop bleeding and allow the healing process to begin.
However, platelets are also important because they contain certain growth factors that trigger cellular reproduction or stimulate tissue regeneration.
So, platelet-rich plasma is essentially blood with more platelets than it would normally contain. Platelet-rich plasma is usually created when clinicians and wellness professionals take blood samples from patients, then place the blood in a centrifuge. The centrifuge spins rapidly to separate platelets and plasma along with other components, concentrating the platelets in the plasma as a result.
What Is PRP Therapy?
In a nutshell, platelet-rich plasma therapy is a unique method for treating hair loss and for providing the body with potential ancillary benefits. This three-step medical treatment involves drawing, processing, and injecting platelet-rich plasma into the scalp to help stimulate tissue regeneration.
In many individuals, hair loss is due to a loss of functionality in certain skin and hair cells. It can also be due to less cellular regeneration around the scalp. By injecting PRP into the scalp, those cells’ regenerative capabilities may be immediately increased.
PRP therapy can work by boosting the blood supply to hair follicles, thus allowing them to grow hair more readily. It may also provide ancillary benefits like increasing the thickness of hair strands as they grow. Depending on the exact needs of the patient, PRP therapy can be combined with other hair loss treatments and procedures.
How Does PRP Therapy for Hair Loss Work?
PRP therapy for hair loss follows a three-step process. Let’s take a look at this process in detail.
Step 1 – Blood Draw
First, a licensed clinician, nurse, or other wellness professional draws blood from the patient’s arm. The blood is then placed into a centrifuge, a spinning machine that can separate fluids of varying densities. This is useful for separating the platelets and concentrating them into the blood plasma.
This part of the process only takes a handful of minutes. When you undergo PRP therapy at Next Health, your comfort is assured. We’ll perform the blood draw carefully and quickly, as well as provide you with snacks to keep your blood sugar up if necessary.
Step 2 – Blood Separation
The blood is placed in a centrifuge for about 10 minutes. After this timeframe, the blood should be separated into three distinct layers:
- A layer of mostly red blood cells
- A layer of platelet-rich plasma
- A layer of platelet-poor plasma
The clinician or nurse in charge of the procedure examines the blood sample and ensures that platelet-rich plasma has been created and is appropriate for the next step.
Step 3 – Injection
At this phase, the platelet-rich plasma is collected into a syringe. Then the nurse or clinician injects the PRP into different areas of the scalp that require hair growth improvements. For example, if a patient has a noticeable bald spot or reclining hairline, the PRP will be injected near those areas to help stimulate cellular regeneration.
Overall, most individuals who benefit from PRP therapy undergo three separate treatments with 4 to 6 weeks in between each treatment session. Many individuals also benefit from maintenance PRP therapy treatments, which occur every 4 to 6 months.
Is PRP Therapy for Hair Loss Effective?
Although research is still in the earliest phase, there is some evidence that PRP therapy for hair loss can be very effective.
For example, one study found that platelet-rich plasma has enough theoretical scientific basis to support use in hair restoration. Another study involving 262 participants found that PRP therapy was effective enough to reduce hair loss and increase the diameter of individual hair strands. It also increased the density of hair growth.
That said, much of the scientific research for PRP therapy is still in its infancy. As more people undergo this therapy, clinicians will be able to better understand its effects and efficacy level for different hair loss needs.
How Long Does PRP Therapy Last?
PRP therapy isn’t a cure for any of the root causes of hair loss. For example, many men lose their hair rapidly after physical maturity due to high levels of testosterone and how that hormone interacts with other systems in the body.
Because of this, PRP therapy for hair loss must be repeated if one hopes to see the same effects maintained over the long term. Generally, clinicians recommend that individuals attend maintenance PRP therapy appointments every 4 to 6 months after the initial treatment concludes. This ensures that their hair has a fresh supply of platelet-rich plasma to draw on all the time.
PRP Therapy for Hair Loss at Next Health
Next Health offers PRP injections for hair loss as part of our all-natural hair restoration procedure. We inject a concentration of your own platelets into targeted problematic areas, such as bald spots or areas with thinning hair, to induce new follicle growth.
With our PRP therapy, your scalp cells will benefit from the growth of new blood vessels. This can improve blood circulation and the circulation of micronutrients. Furthermore, PRP therapy can enhance collagen production: a key concern for ensuring the health of your scalp skin and hair over the years.
What To Expect from Your PRP Therapy Session
At Next Health, we put the comfort and safety of our patients at the forefront of each of our therapeutic practices.
When you arrive for your PRP therapy appointment, we’ll follow the three-step outline described above. Your appointment begins with a small blood draw, then running the blood sample through a centrifuge to concentrate the platelets as needed.
To ensure your comfort, our staff members utilize numbing cream. This cream is applied to the treatment area so you don’t feel the pinprick of the needle, nor do you feel pain at any step of the process. We also use numbing cream on your scalp to prepare it for PRP injection.
Once the platelet-rich plasma is ready, a staff member will inject the activated platelets into the targeted areas. Post-care instructions are provided immediately so you can continue to enjoy your day after treatment without feeling sore or any other negative side effects.
Additional PRP Therapies
In addition to PRP therapy for hair loss, Next Health offers two other PRP treatments that utilize the same resources:
- PRP microneedling leverages the regenerative nature of platelet-rich plasma to provide skin benefits. PRP microneedling provides your skin cells with extra collagen and it's considered to be a type of collagen induction therapy or CIT. This can help to repair skin damage and degradation over time
- PRP injections for facial skin. This treatment may lead to numerous important benefits such as reduced fine lines and wrinkles, improved collagen and elastin, and improved skin texture
Contact Next Health Today
Ultimately, PRP therapy for hair loss could be a viable, all-natural treatment if your hair is thinning or otherwise degrading in quality. With Next Health, you can potentially retain the thick and colorful hair of youth for longer, plus benefit from other wellness therapies at any of our locations.
Want to know more or sign up for an appointment ASAP?Request a complimentary consult and speak to a Next Health professional about your PRP treatment today.
Platelet-Rich Plasma in Androgenic Alopecia: Myth or an Effective Tool - PMC | NCBI
Platelet-Rich Plasma for Treating Androgenic Alopecia: A Systematic Review | SpringerLink
Hair Loss: Who Gets It and Causes | American Academy of Dermatology Association