Here at The Griffin Center of hair Restoration and Research, we believe that every patient is unique and that every case of hair loss requires a customized solution. While we know that hair transplant surgery can produce exceptional, natural looking results, we also are constantly exploring new hair restoration treatments so that we can offer our patients solutions tailored to their individual needs. One of the most exciting new treatment methods is platelet rich plasma, or PRP, a therapy that has been used for more than two decades in helping wounds to heal more quickly and completely. Here are answers to some of the more common questions our patients ask about this revolutionary procedure.
What are Platelets?
Human blood is comprised of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. The platelets are small, disk-shaped cell fragments in the plasma portion of the blood that work to facilitate clotting and tissue regeneration. They are known to secrete fundamental growth factors that initiate cell regrowth.
How is Platelet Rich Plasma Made?
A sample of the patient’s blood is spun in a centrifuge to separate the red blood cell portion from the platelets and plasma components. The separated “solid” portion of the blood, or platelet rich plasma, contains approximately five to seven times the number of platelets found in normal circulating blood along with concentrated bioactive proteins that aid in wound healing.
How Does Platelet Rich Plasma Treat Hair Loss?
Androgenetic alopecia, or pattern hair loss, causes the hair follicles to gradually shrink, so that they produce thinner and thinner hairs until, eventually, they stop producing hair altogether. Injecting platelet rich plasma into the dermis of the scalp can stimulate these shrinking hair follicles to become healthier and larger, reversing the thinning process and facilitating fuller, thicker hair growth.
How is Platelet Rich Plasma Used?
Because Platelet Rich Plasma works with the body’s natural healing process, it is particularly effective when used in conjunction with surgical hair transplant procedures to encourage newly grafted follicular units to take root and begin to grow. In addition to treating pattern hair loss, PRP has also been successful in treating traction alopecia, a condition that results when tight hair styles such as braiding, ponytails, and sew-in hair pieces produce constant tension that damages the hair follicles. It’s important to be evaluated by Dr. Curtis or Dr. Griffin to see if you are a candidate for PRP treatment.
What does Platelet Rich Plasma Treatment Entail?
Platelet rich plasma treatments can generally be performed at our office in less than an hour and do not require hospitalization. For most patients, we recommend a set of three initial treatments six weeks apart followed by a repeat treatment one year after the first in order to achieve the best results.
If you have questions about your individual hair loss and what form of treatment would be best for you, please contact The Griffin Center to schedule a consultation. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ to get the latest news in hair restoration and research.