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Natural Awakenings Chicago

Platelet-Rich Plasma : Offers Hope for Hair Restoration and Anti-Aging

Oct 25, 2016 08:08PM ● By Promila Banerjee

A person’s hair is one of the first things we notice. Yet, whether stress-induced, due to hormonal imbalances, micronutrient deficiencies, genetic or autoimmune conditions, poor hair care or any medical condition, including alopecia, hair loss is a common concern for many men and women, and it can impact our daily confidence levels.

         New treatments for some hair loss conditions incorporate a person’s own blood cells. Although blood is mainly comprised of liquid plasma, it contains solid components such as red cells, white cells and platelets. The platelets are best known for their importance in clotting blood; however, they also contain hundreds of protein growth factors which are very important for hair growth, anti-aging effects and the healing of injuries.

         Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) contains as much five to 10 times more platelets than are typically found in blood. As an alternative to surgical procedures, this substance can be used to correct some of the most common aging concerns such as hair growth and skin rejuvenation.

         The growth factors and other chemical components called cytokines in PRP stimulate and awaken hair follicles in the resting (non-growth) phase and push them into active growth phase. It is safe, effective and produces natural-looking results. PRP hair rejuvenation is a cost-effective option for people with thinning hair or androgenetic alopecia (hair loss at the top of the scalp and a receding hairline, particularly along the temples). Women with male pattern alopecia can also benefit.

         PRP is a unique formulation created from the patient’s own blood which has been specifically processed to increase the concentration of platelets known to stimulate stem cells. Stem cells in turn stimulate the growth of collagen to help the body heal and regenerate more quickly. While cosmetic applications are relatively new, PRP has been used for more than 30 years in orthopedic medicine, reconstructive surgery and dentistry to induce new collagen, reduce sun damage, scars and wrinkles when injected or infused into the skin.

         Treatment with PRP can be completed in less than 30 minutes. When the patient arrives, a small vial of blood is drawn, similar to the volume required for routine blood work. The blood is then spun in a centrifuge to separate the growth factors, platelets and stem cells from the rest of the blood. During this non-surgical, zero downtime procedure, the body’s own PRP is injected with a small needle into the scalp after topical numbing and the growth factors within the blood cells go to work to naturally stimulate the growth of hair. Patients may notice a fuzzy appearance after the first session. The treatment not only promotes hair growth, but also strengthens hair follicles. It’s important to note that PRP does not grow new hair on a bald patch. It can only make the existing thinning hair thicker by strengthening the hair follicles.

         When using PRP for anti-aging, to achieve the best results, most patients receive three treatments spaced at four-to-eight-week intervals. During the first month, a noticeable improvement in skin texture can be seen. Maximum collagen regeneration occurs around three months after the initial treatment, resulting in a plumper, lifted skin with fewer lines and wrinkles. PRP also plays a significant role in scar reduction, whether it is acne scars or scars from other sources, especially when used as an adjunct to micro-needling or deep laser.

         After undergoing PRP treatments, patients are able to resume normal activities immediately. There are very few side effects because the injected substance is sourced from the patient’s own body, which eliminates the risk of infection or allergic reaction.

For a complimentary consultation, call Promila Banerjee, M.D., of Halo Laser and Aesthetic Medicine at 847-260-7300 or visit HaloMedicine.com. See ad on page 17.