Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) in Hair Transplantation

Hair Transplantation by PRP

Because it is so visible, our hair is a vital part of defining who we are, helping us to create the impression we want to present to the world; be that as a business person, artist, intellectual, rebel or all or part of the above. Our hair is somehow related to our psyche, not only to our sense of attractiveness but to our power and style, so hair loss is a very sensitive subject for many who feel that as their hair begins to thin out and retreat so does their mojo or sense of self.

The importance of our hair has been depicted in literature and mythology throughout history and continues now, albeit with more intensity – if the number of products and services advertised, the amount of research studies and the money being poured into keeping our hair is any guide. Books, films, myths and advertising pages abound with information and stories about hair, and people spend thousands of dollars to maintain and restore it to its natural glory because it is such an important part of our lives. When it starts to fall it can be difficult to deal with.

Interestingly, humans, orangutans and horses are among the few animals able to grow long hair on their heads. Humans lost their thick body hair millennia ago but it is thought they retained long head hair as insulation against the sun’s ultraviolet rays, and to provide cooling. Why modern man loses hair can be attributed to many causes including stress, bad diet and lack of hair and scalp care. However, male pattern baldness is an act of nature – it’s genetic. This can be seen when identical twins begin to lose their hair at the same age and at the same rate and pattern. This is despite a well balanced and healthy diet or good hair care and no matter how much stress they are under.

While hair loss can be depressing, there is hope. There are many studies and trials worldwide in search of the holy grail of hair regeneration. Platelet-rich Plasma (PRP) treatments which are said to help restore a sufferer’s crowning glory after transplantation, are proving to have positive results.

But first, let’s look at what hair transplant treatment is all about.

Hair Transplantation

It was not until 1995 that modern methods of hair transplantation developed using single follicular units and appeared in medical literature but hair transplants date back to the 1950s. Dr Norman Orentreich performed the first hair transplant for male pattern baldness in New York in 1952. His method has been further researched and developed since then, evolving into a popular treatment for hair loss.

The two main ways modern hair transplantation is achieved involves the follicles. These are Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) and Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT). Both methods extract follicular units, which are naturally occurring clusters of one to four hairs, from the hair restoration client’s scalp. These are then implanted surgically in the balding or thinning areas. The follicles can be taken, or harvested, from the scalp area or sometimes other parts of the body, although over time even these hairs too will fall out. One problem with the procedure is that it is, in effect, a replanting of existing hair follicles from areas of your scalp where they are more abundant. This is usually from the back and sides of the scalp, and these run out eventually, usually over a long period of time. In other words they are not a lifelong fix.

These days hair transplants can be done in either one large session or in many sessions over time. The procedure, as already mentioned, involves the removal of your hair follicles from an area of stronger growth and replanting them in the areas of thinner growth or baldness. The transplanted follicles usually flourish during the months after the procedure, producing hair. But some follicles fail to thrive and are wasted.
PRP treatment used in conjunction with hair transplantation procedures can enhance hair regrowth, and minimise scarring and healing. It is a treatment most hair transplant therapists and clients are placing their bets on, and expect the promising results to continue as research and clinical trial findings are released.

What is PRP therapy?

Some other names for this treatment are ‘PRP hair regrowth treatment’ and in Britain, it’s known as ‘angel PRP hair regrowth’ and ‘vampire hair regrowth plan’. Some hair restoration specialists also combine it with micro needling and hair transplant surgery or medications like Propecia and Minoxidil.

PRP has been used in many other areas of medicine including the treatment of burns patients and in sports medicine where it increases healing after injuries. This has led to trials of the procedure for use in hair transplantation. PRP is based on the remarkable healing qualities of our own blood and its components. This includes, red blood cells or haemoglobin which carries oxygen around the body, plus white blood cells or leukocytes, the cells of the immune system involved in protecting the body against both foreign invaders and infections. There is also plasma which contains water and nutrients; and there are the all-important, though somewhat smaller, platelets, which are not classed as cells because they don’t have a nucleus. Platelets are part of the blood clotting mechanism and our bodies emergency response to injuries; they are the repair team called in to heal our injuries and wounds. While platelets are vital in forming a barrier to stop bleeding, they are also full of growth-factor molecules used in recovery and the healing of tissue.

How is PRP therapy used in hair transplantation?

During PRP treatment your hair transplant therapist will take some blood from your arm and it will be spun in a centrifuge separating the platelet-rich plasma from the red and white blood cells. The plasma is used to concoct a rich concentration of platelets which is many times larger than in the normal bloodstream. Your hair transplant therapist will use a thin needle for PRP injections into areas of your scalp, and the platelets then do their job and increase the chances of hair regrowth by naturally stimulating the follicles. The tiny needle injury to the scalp sends a message to the brain that also sends signals to platelets in the existing bloodstream, adding to the amount of platelet and plasma activity in the area being injected and also bringing nutrients to the sites of injections.

There is, of course, some discomfort, but this revolutionary hair treatment is showing promising results at stimulating and maintaining hair growth alone or together with hair transplantation and is gaining popularity worldwide. It is considered a natural therapy and involves minimal risk, with no pills or chemicals, lotions or foams, but it doesn’t happen overnight. Most clients see some results after three months and the benefits continue as new hair grows and your mojo returns full steam ahead.

Why not contact Bioscor to discuss hair transplantation and PRP treatment to get your hair growth happening? Call them on (03) 9544 7429 in Melbourne, or (08) 9380 6868 in Perth. Or contact Bioscor online.