PRP

What is platelet-rich plasma?

Platelet-rich plasma has 2 major components: plasma and platelets, a type of blood cell which does hemostasis, thrombosis and wound healing. they also contain growth factors that can trigger cell reproduction and stimulate tissue regeneration or healing in the treated area. Platelet-rich plasma known commonly as (PRP) is the blood that contains more platelets than normal.

To create platelet-rich plasma, clinicians take a blood sample from the patient and place it into a device called a centrifuge machine that rapidly spins the sample, separating out the other components of the blood from the platelets and concentrating them within the plasma.

What is a PRP injection?

After creating platelet-rich plasma from a patient’s blood sample, that solution is injected into the scalp. The idea is to increase the concentration of specific bioproteins or hormones, called growth factors, in a specific area to accelerate the cell division and healing process and encouraging hair growth.

Mechanism of PRP injections-

The increased concentration of growth factors in PRP stimulates healing process. It encourages hair growth by shifting hair to anagen phase. PRP has following proteins:

  • PDGF:

    Platelet derived growth factor: it activates cell membrane receptors which develops phosphate bonds which activates signal proteins to initiate mitogenesis, angiogenesis and machrophage activation.

  • TGF- B :

    Transforming growth factor-B: this helps long term healing which contains fibroblasts, marrow stem cells and preosteoblasts.

  • VEGF :

    Vascular endothelial growth factor: it is known for vascular permeability factor which stimulates vasculogenesis and angiogenesis.

  • EGF :

    Epidermal growth factor: stimulates cell growth, proliferation and differentiation by binding its receptor.

STEPS of PRP therapy:

  • 10- 20 ml blood is drawn from your arm and put into centrifuge machine.

  • After 1st spin of centrifuge round about 15 minutes at the speed of 1500 rpm the plasma and serum get separated.

  • Plasma is separated and serum is discarded. Plasma is again set to centrifuge at the speed of 3000 rpm for 15 minutes. After spin it gets separated into 3 layers: platelet poor plasma & platelet rich plasma. The platelet rich plasma is drawn into syringe.

  • The platelet rich plasma is then injected into areas of scalp.

RISKS of PRP therapy for hair loss:

PRP should not be recommended to patients who are on blood thinners (aspirin, clopidogrel), heavy smokers, history of alcohol or drug misuse.

It should also be rejected in acute or chronic infections, cancer, chronic liver disease, chronic skin disease, hemodynamic instability, low platelet count and thyroid disease.

If the scalp is not hygienic due to dandruff, seborrhea, dermatitis one should treat this with medication and then can opt for PRP.

It is not helpful in patients with alopecia areata or totalis.

SIDE EFFCTS of PRP therapy:

As PRP involves injecting your own blood you aren’t at risk for getting major risks but one should be cautious as it may carry risks such as injury to blood vessels, nerve injury, infection, calcification at injection sites, scar formation.

WHO can be benefited with PRP therapy:

PRP can be used in treating male pattern baldness i.e. androgenic alopecia as adjuvant therapy to DHT blockers. it has seen preventing hair loss and promoting new hair growth.

It helps in stimulation of hair growth after hair transplant. It stimulates inactive hair follicles.

PRP injections can help support blood circulation surrounding hair follicles which helps to create thicker hair in anagen phase. It increases diameter of existing hair.

PRP is effective for individuals where hair roots are still alive. It doesn’t help with bald patches.

PRP therapy helps to develop poor donor area.

BENEFITS of PRP therapy:

Injection

Minimal side-effects

Injection

Non-surgical procedure

Injection

Natural results

Injection

Day care procedure

Injection

Faster recovery no rest required

Injection

Can perform daily activities immediately

HOW MANY PRP injections are needed?

Most PRP injection requires 3 treatments 4 weeks apart and maintenance are required every 4-6 months.