No one wants to look into the mirror and discover that their hair is thinning. Nevertheless, some 50 million men and 30 million women in the U.S. suffer from androgenetic alopecia, a common form of hair loss better known as male pattern baldness. Besides the obvious changes to their appearance, hair loss can severely impact one’s self-confidence and make them feel uncomfortable while interacting during social situations. It is possible for patients in Dallas, TX to stimulate their hair to regrow naturally with nonsurgical platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, which are performed at ZO Skin Centre. Read on to learn about the benefits and dramatic results that can be achieved with this innovative treatment.
What is PRP?
An alternative to surgical hair transplants, PRP injections are performed on the scalp. They are composed of growth factors that are derived from a patient’s own blood. These substances are produced naturally by the body and work to battle the effects of aging as well as other damage. The liquid component of blood, called plasma, is made mostly of proteins and water. It allows for circulation throughout the body of red and white blood cells as well as platelets, which are cells that cause clots and play a big role in the natural healing process. During PRP treatments, the growth factors that are injected boost quantities of reparative cells in targeted areas while the plasma causes the scalp to quickly heal around the hair follicles.
Who is a candidate for PRP?
Both men and women can experience thinning hair, which may be caused by various factors and hereditary conditions such as androgenic alopecia. Hair follicles that become dormant and hormonal changes such as menopause may result in hair loss, which also can occur as part of the natural aging process. Those who have recently started to experience rapid hair loss are prime candidates for PRP since the condition becomes more difficult to treat the longer that it persists. However, PRP may not be effective for Dallas area patients who take blood-thinning medications, suffer from a hormone imbalance, or struggle with chronic conditions such as lupus.
The skilled staffers at ZO Skin Centre can determine who is a good candidate for PRP treatment. Tests may be conducted to rule out any underlying conditions that may be causing or contributing to your hair loss. In such cases, medications may instead be used to effectively treat the condition. Your hair follicles will be viewed under magnification to look for the presence and degree of miniaturization, which causes the hair strands (and later the follicles) to shrink in size. This eventually results in balding. Men and women in Dallas with early signs of thinning hair who are not yet missing large patches of hair, or who have experienced an event that caused their hair to cease growing temporarily, may also be excellent candidates to receive PRP injections.
With successful treatments, it is possible to witness a restoration to the hairline as formerly thin areas increase in volume and thickness. As a result, patients may also experience a boost in their self-esteem allowing them to regain the confidence they need to face the world head on.
What happens during a PRP procedure?
At ZO Skin Centre in Dallas, patients are made comfortable before a blood sample is drawn. The vial is then sent to our lab and placed in a sterile centrifuge where it is separated into layers of red blood cells, platelet-poor plasma, and platelet-rich plasma. The latter contains the restorative platelets and growth factors that stimulate the hair to grow.
Patients remain awake throughout the procedure. The scalp is numbed with a topical or local anesthetic and, with an ultrafine needle, PRP is injected just below the scalp and into the hair follicles. A microneedling treatment also can be used to create thousands of small, carefully calibrated punctures that assist in the delivery of the PRP to the follicles. Because only a small needle is required, it usually is not obvious to others when injections have been made. As an added bonus, the platelets actually assist with healing at the injection sites. Most PRP sessions take an hour or less to complete with little or no downtime required. However, the scalp may feel numb for a short time following the procedure.
What results can be expected?
Studies have shown that more than 80% of male and female patients who have androgenic alopecia experience reduced hair loss following their PRP treatment. Improvements in hair growth usually can be seen within about 4-6 months of the initial PRP treatment. During this time, Dallas patients will attend follow up appointments at ZO Skin Centre so that their progress can be monitored and, if necessary, additional treatment recommendations can be made. In most cases, between 12-18 months later, a second PRP treatment is suggested to improve the health of the follicles as the hair regrows. This will also help to ensure that hair loss remains minimal.
The embarrassing effects of thinning hair can be devastating, causing men and women who suffer from this condition to retreat from social outings and abandon activities that they once enjoyed. Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections in the scalp use components extracted from patients’ own blood to regrow hair and restore not only their appearance but also their self-confidence. Contact ZO Skin Centre in Dallas, TX to learn how this exciting procedure may benefit you and get back to looking and feeling your best.