There’s a New Solution for Hair Thinning and Hair Loss—Platelet Rich Plasma
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) was discovered about a decade ago by physicians looking to speed up the process of healing damaged joints after injury or surgery. More recently, PRP has been used to stimulate collagen production in the skin, promote cell growth and wound healing and repair broken blood vessels. PRP is also a worthwhile procedure for hair restoration in women suffering from hair thinning and hair loss.
What should I expect during and after the PRP procedure?
PRP for hair restoration is simple and effective. A clinician will draw your blood (typically from your arm) and spin it at high speed in a centrifuge machine to separate your blood’s plasma from the platelets. The plasma, which is rich in growth factors, can then be used to help promote hair growth by prolonging the growing phase of the hair cycle. Essentially, the growth factors from your blood’s plasma act as a messenger to signal skin cells to function. Your skilled provider at Honu Women’s Health will inject your plasma into the scalp with a syringe where your hair needs renewed growth.
There will only be a mild feeling of pressure at the injection site, and there are virtually no side effects from PRP. Most patients receive the injections without any numbing, as there is minimal discomfort; however, cool air or ice packs can be used to minimize any pain. Although the injection process is meticulous, the entire procedure usually takes about 30 minutes. Since PRP uses your own blood plasma to restore hair growth, you have no risk of contracting a communicable disease. PRP is among the safest ways to stimulate the activity of the hair follicles and promote new hair growth.
There is minimal downtime after your PRP procedure for hair restoration. You will need to go a day or two without your typical hair maintenance (blow drying, coloring, etc.) and activity (e.g. swimming), but it is perfectly fine to take a warm shower, as the hot temperature will enhance blood flow and circulation throughout the scalp.
How often should I receive PRP for optimal results?
Your genetics, hair pattern, the severity of hair loss, age and hormones are considered when developing your customized PRP plan. Most patients will receive monthly injections for three to six months, then spread the procedures out between three or four months for up to two years. PRP not only triggers new hair growth, but also maintains the growth by increasing blood supply to the hair follicle and increasing the thickness of the hair shaft.
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Am I a good candidate for PRP?
Generally, anyone experiencing hair loss or thinning is a good candidate for PRP. However, those with more recent hair loss tend to respond best. Patients with androgenic alopecia, a genetically determined type of hair loss or thinning that usually occurs along the top of the head, also tend to respond well to PRP. For women, this type of alopecia usually manifests as a widening part with normal thickness toward the back of the head.
For those with underlying medical conditions resulting in the hair loss, treatment of the condition followed by PRP yields excellent results.
What results should I expect from PRP?
Patients will first experience less hair shedding, followed by hair regrowth and an increased length of existing hair. By receiving PRP every three to six months on a long-term basis, patients should continue to see regrowth as well as a halt to hair loss due to the growth factors and stem cells being replenished.
PRP for hair restoration is an excellent supplement to other measures being taken to promote hair growth. It can be part of a multifaceted plan for hair thinning and loss and is completely safe to do while taking prescription medications for hair regrowth.
Women’s health encompasses more than just being free from illness and, at Honu Women’s Health, we believe it is more than obstetrics and gynecology. We offer the total package—a customized path toward optimizing your inner health and outer beauty—that results in soundness of mind, confidence in your physical self and happiness in your sexuality. We understand the innate connection between body and mind, which is why we are proud to offer PRP for hair restoration from our expert health care providers in a comfortable, relaxing setting.