Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is gaining popularity as a non-surgical, and safe alternative for hair treatment and hair restoration treatment for both women and men.
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The PRP Process
PRP is produced from your own blood in my office. The blood is drawn in the same manner as when you have any general blood tests. The blood is then spun in a centrifuge with the purpose of separating and removing the platelets from the rest of the blood. The remaining blood is centrifuged again, to produce Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) that contains five to seven times the concentration of platelets normally present in the blood. Finally, This PRP is then injected back into the scalp.
The Platelets in the PRP contain natural growth factors (essential proteins) needed to promote the rate of tissue healing and regeneration within inactive hair follicles. Inside the platelets are a variety of growth factors that get released during the body’s ongoing cellular repair process, stimulating the hair follicles to promote hair growth.
The Non-Surgical Alternative
PRP is a great solution for both men and women, especially when hair transplant surgery is not an option. PRP injections can stimulate new hair growth in men who suffer from androgenetic alopecia (known as male pattern baldness) and women who suffer from female pattern baldness.
Does it Hurt?
Don’t worry, it really doesn’t hurt. A numbing cream is applied 30 minutes prior to the PRP injections. Then, just before the procedure, Dr. Sobo will also place a local anesthetic in the scalp to minimize any discomfort. The procedure will take approximately 30 minutes from the time your blood is drawn until the PRP is injected back into your scalp. It is performed three times, in four to six week intervals. Based on individual cases, more treatments may be desirable for optimal outcome.
Are there any potential side effects to PRP Hair Treatment?
PRP has been confidently used for several years in orthopedics for joint problems, however its usage for hair restoration is relatively new. There are many published studies that have reported improvement in hair growth, and recovery from all hair restoration procedures without the display of any significant side effects.
PRP: RESTORATION FOR HAIR LOSS
One Step at a Time
Keeping the hair you have now is the most important first step in your hair restoration process.
PRP Injection Therapy helps hair follicles to activate, “wake up” and produce hair again. PRP is most effective in patients that possess functioning hair follicles, but are not keeping up with their hair loss, versus patients who are already bald with no viable hair follicles remaining in the area of their lost hair.
Treatments and Timing
For patients with thinning hair due to poorly functioning hair follicles, three PRP Hair Restoration Treatments, performed 4-6 weeks apart, will result in the activated hair follicles beginning to produce a fuller, thicker head of hair. The results may be maintained for as long as 3 years. Keeping your hair as thick as possible over time would be a simple matter of repeating the injection, the timing of which will vary from patient to patient based on individual need and desire. People who suffer with more aggressive hair loss do best with shorter treatment intervals (annually). Because pattern baldness is a dynamic process, periodic assessments are done to determine if any adjustments to your treatment protocol are needed to meet your expectations.
Best Practices for PRP in Hair Restoration
The optimal strategy to manage your hair loss over a lifetime is to stabilize ongoing hair loss as soon as it becomes a problem, and then maintain that hair. PRP or any hair restoration method, even hair transplantation, will only be a temporary solution unless ongoing maintenance is practiced. Again, it is paramount to understand that keeping the hair you have now is the most important first step in your hair restoration process.
Causes of Hair Loss and The Role of PRP in Hair Restoration
»Normal Hair Loss: Everyone loses hair everyday. It is normal to lose between 50 to 150 hairs per day from normal shedding.
»Androgenetic alopecia (also called Male Pattern Baldness) is the scientific name for the genetic tendency in both men and women for pattern baldness. In MPB (Male pattern Baldness) the hairs on the top of the scalp have a genetic sensitivity to the male hormone di-hydrotestosterone (DHT). The hairs on the sides and back of the scalp do not possess this genetic trait and therefore are not affected. Thus, the typical Male pattern balding with a balding head while the hair on the temples remains.
Androgenetic alopecia is the cause of over 95% of cases of male pattern baldness in men, and thinning hair in women. This type of hair loss is relentlessly progressive, causing continued hair loss over time. The earlier in life pattern hair loss begins the more advanced the hair loss will ultimately become. Pattern loss tends to continue and become more advanced as people age. PRP may be very effective for Androgenetic alopecia. And again, we stress that the earlier the treatments are started, the greater the likelihood that a patient may keep and maintain their hair.
»Sudden Hair Loss from Toxic Exposure: Anagen effluvium is the sudden loss of hair as a result of cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy. These treatments halt the growth phase of hair follicles, and result in the sudden shedding of hair. There are many medications that have hair loss as a potential side effect.
»Delayed Hair Loss from Stress: Telogen effluvium is a severe slowing of new hair growth in which the stress induces a high proportion of hair follicles to enter the resting stage, followed by a delayed shedding of the hair a few months after the stressful event.
»Hair Shaft Breakage: In this kind of hair loss the hair shaft breaks and the hair falls off but the growing end remains in the follicle and continues to grow. Excessive use of chemicals, hair styling, sun, and the chlorine in swimming pools contribute to hair shaft breakage.
»Hair Pulling: Traction alopecia is the loss of hair from constant pulling, often the result of tightly braided hairstyles and hair weaves.
Other Medical Conditions
»Alopecia areata is an immune system disorder that causes the hair follicles to stop producing hairs. A sudden loss of hair from small patches on the head will occur. Alopecia totals is an advanced forms of this disorder, where all hair on the head is lost. Alopecia universalis results in the absence of all body hair.
»Trauma, such as burns and injury to hair follicles, can cause permanent hair loss
Skin Conditions and Hair Loss
»Hormone-related irregularities can cause hair loss among other symptoms.
»Nutritional deficiencies can cause weak hair shafts that tend to break off.
»Many chronic illnesses will have hair loss cited among their symptoms.
PRP for Heel Pain
I suffered from heel pain for several months. My prior doctor had given me a couple of cortisone injections which did not give me relief . After a PRP treatment my pain started improving in less than 2 weeks. Doctor Sobo gave me a second PRP treatment 4 weeks later and within 2 months from the start my pain was gone. I can now walk as much as I like and I have not had any more problems with my foot.
– Olena, CT