Platelet-Rich Plasma: Does It Work?
Platelet-Rich Plasma: Does It Work?
Explaining platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is more difficult than pronouncing it, so brace yourself, because there’s science in these waters. PRP is contained within our blood and can be separated from red and white blood cells.
Many hair restoration professionals inject this “blood ingredient” to stimulate hair growth during treatment. That’s about as far as we can break it down without using complex terms like abzyme, achondrite and cytosol — all real words I found that have nothing to do with hair loss.
Difficult terms and complex science aside, does platelet-rich plasma actually work? For the answer, we’ll have to look at — sigh — more science.
The Science Behind the Claims
The coolest scientist in the world, Brian Cox, once said, “Everyone has the right to an opinion, but that opinion can be roundly ignored and even made fun of.” Moral of the story? There needs to be some science behind PRP before touting its effectiveness in reversing baldness.
Fortunately, there’s plenty of that to go around. Researchers in India tested PRP injections over a three-month period in their patients. By the end of the trial, they found that PRP was one of the most effective and affordable methods out there for treating male-pattern baldness.
When researching platelet-rich plasma in androgenic alopecia — just a fancy way to say male-pattern baldness — we also found that scientists published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology agreed. These studies showed that PRP improved the hair stem, caliber, shaft and shine while reducing breakage.
The best part of PRP? It succeeds where other hair restoration techniques fail.
PRP Outshines Other Baldness Reversing Treatments
Maybe you’ve been losing your hair for a while and nothing seems to work. Before deciding to take vows and become a monk at an Indian monastery, take a look at other research involving PRP. After all, a few minutes of science journals sounds better than whatever the hell a ticket to India costs these days.
A study published in the Journal of Cutaneous and Aesthetic Surgery looked at patients who hadn’t responded to pharmaceutical treatments in at least six months. After just four treatments, hair follicle counts had increased from 71 to 93 follicular units. Other researchers suggest using PRP as a combination therapy with other treatments such as robotic hair generation.
Getting the Most From PRP
We can almost guarantee you’ll never pull off the bald style as well as model Slick Woods, so it’s important that your hair care regimen work towards improving the effectiveness of platelet-rich plasma treatments. Fortunately, there are several ways you can do just that.
- Stay the course: Depending on your individual results, it could take a few months to show maximum results. Seriously, though, you’re saving your hair. If that doesn’t keep you consistent, nothing will.
- Get PRP maintenance: If you cease PRP, you may begin to lose hair again. This means you should have a maintenance program. The PRP Clinical Hair Maintenance Membership at BSG will ensure your hair growth sticks around.
- Pay attention to post-treatment instructions: After a PRP treatment, avoid touching the treated area for eight hours. A pH-balanced shampoo should also be used for three days, and avoid swimming for two days. You’ll be given this information, so seriously, don’t ignore it.
Hold On to What You’ve Got
Research has been pretty consistent when proving that platelet-rich plasma can help stop male-pattern baldness. Regardless of how distinguished you might look without hair, we’re going to wager that it’s not something you want to experiment with just yet.
There are plenty of hair restoration techniques out there, and PRP can improve on many of them. It’s your opportunity to keep the hair that rounds out your individual style. Go check out BSG’s Dispatch for more articles on maintaining that style — because I need to shower after all this science talk.