Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment for hair restoration is a three-step medical procedure that involves drawing, processing, and injecting a patient’s blood into the scalp. According to some medical professionals, PRP injections stimulate and maintain hair’s natural growth by enhancing the blood supply to the follicles of hair and increasing the hair shaft thickness. This method is sometimes used in conjunction with other hair loss treatments or medications.

There is more research needed to determine whether PRP is a viable hair loss treatment. PRP therapy, on the other hand, has been around since the 1980s. It’s been used to treat issues like tendons, ligaments, and muscles that have been injured.

PRP treatment and its effectiveness

According to several basic science studies, PRP treatment improves soft tissue and bone healing in animal models. In Achilles tendon injuries, increased cell numbers and tendon strength have been observed, and improved muscle regeneration has been observed in gastrocnemius (calf) muscle injuries.

PRP treatment is now widely used for various conditions, including acute and chronic tendon problems and ligament and muscle injuries resulting from these animal models’ positive findings. Although some early-stage clinical studies in humans have shown promise, they are limited by their small number of patients involved and study design.

PRP treatment for chronic tendon conditions like lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow) and Achilles tendinosis, which affects the Achilles tendon, has shown to have the most promising early results. Despite this, a recent study published in the American Medical Association Journal concluded that PRP injection had no advantage over saline (placebo) injection to treat Achilles tendinosis.

Researchers found PRP treatment to be more effective than hyaluronic acid treatment in a small study involving knee osteoarthritis. When used to treat rotator cuff tears and medial collateral ligament (MCL) injuries in the knee, PRP has positive or similar results.

Overall, published clinical studies show that PRP treatment has limited efficacy. On the other hand, PRP is considered a relatively low-risk treatment that can improve or speed healing because it is made from a patient’s blood.

More research is needed to prove PRP treatment’s efficacy and determine the best ways to standardize the treatment preparation.

The procedure of PRP treatment

The three-step PRP therapy procedure is as follows: Most PRP treatments require three treatments spaced four to six weeks apart. Medicines are needed every 4–6 months for maintenance.

Step 1

Your blood is drawn and spun in a centrifuge, usually from your arm (a machine that separates fluids with different densities by spinning rapidly).

Step 2

Your blood will have separated into three layers after being centrifuged for about 10 minutes: ● RBCs (red blood cells)

● The plasma that is rich in platelets

● The plasma that is deficient in platelets

Step 3

A syringe is used to collect platelet-rich plasma, which is then injected into the scalp areas where more hair growth is desired. There is more research needed to prove that PRP works. It’s also unclear who it’s most effective for — or under what circumstances.

According to a recent study, “Hair restoration using PRP is still in its early stages, even though it has a sufficient theoretical scientific basis to support its use. There is still a scarcity of clinical evidence in this area.”

Adverse effects of PRP

You are not at risk for contracting a communicable disease because PRP therapy involves injecting your blood into your scalp.

Even so, any therapy that involves injections carries the risk of side effects like these: ● Scar tissue

● Injection site calcification

● Infections

● Nerves or blood vessels injury

There’s also the possibility that the therapy’s anesthetic will cause you to have an adverse reaction. If you decide to undergo PRP therapy for hair loss, inform your doctor ahead of time about your anesthetic tolerance.

Factors affecting PRP treatment

Make a list of all medications you’re taking, including supplements and herbal remedies, before the procedure.

Many providers will advise against PRP for hair loss during your initial consultation if you have a history of hair loss or:

● Have a past known history of drug or alcohol abuse

● Are a chronic smoker

● Are on antiplatelet drugs like aspirin

If you’ve been diagnosed with a disease, you might be turned down for treatment:

● Thyroid disease

● Low platelet count

● Sepsis

● Systemic disorder

● Platelet dysfunction syndromes

● Metabolic disorder

● Hypofibrinogenemia

● Hemodynamic instability

● Skin diseases

● CLD (chronic liver disease)

● Cancer

● Acute or chronic infections

Estimated Cost of PRP for hair restoration

PRP therapy usually consists of three treatments over four to six weeks, with follow-up treatments every four to six months.

For the first three treatments, the cost typically ranges from $1,500 to $3,500, with one injection costing $400 or more. A variety of factors determines the price. consisting of:

● Nutritive components addition

● Equipment Quality

● Geographic location

PRP for hair loss treatment is considered cosmetic by many insurance plans, and they do not cover any of the costs. To find out if your insurance covers PRP therapy, contact your provider.

Note To Know

If you’re concerned about hair loss, you have several options, including Rogaine and Propecia medication, as well as hair transplant surgery. PRP therapy is also something to think about. Even though PRP has limited clinical evidence for hair loss works, many people believe It is a risk-free and effective method for reversing hair loss and promoting new hair growth. Consult your doctor to determine which treatment option (or combination of treatments) is best for you.

References:

  1. Khatu SS, More YE, Gokhale NR, Chavhan DC, Bendsure N. Platelet-rich plasma in androgenic alopecia: myth or an effective tool. J Cutan Aesthet Surg. 2014 Apr;7(2):107-10. doi: 10.4103/0974-2077.138352. PMID: 25136212; PMCID: PMC4134641.
  2. Mayo Clinic Staff. (2018). Hair loss.
    mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hair-loss/symptoms-causes/syc-20372926
  3. Middleton KK, Barro V, Muller B, Terada S, Fu FH. Evaluation of the effects of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy involved in the healing of sports-related soft tissue injuries. Iowa Orthop J. 2012;32:150-63. PMID: 23576936; PMCID: PMC3565396.
  4. Wang HL, Avila G. Platelet rich plasma: myth or reality? Eur J Dent. 2007 Oct;1(4):192-4. PMID: 19212466; PMCID: PMC2609914.
  5. Kohen, R. M. (2010, 10 18). Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Treatment: An Overview. Hospital for Special Surgery. https://www.hss.edu/conditions_platelet-rich-plasma-prp.asp

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