Men and women alike want a head full of hair. A mark of beauty, healthy hair are not as easy to achieve. There are so many factors at play like environment, diet, genetics, gender, that influence how healthy your hair will be.
As the issue of hair loss has a huge impact on your self-esteem, it also then impairs psychological health in some people as well. Therefore, while the whole issue may seem superficial, the impact of baldness is rather grave.
Whereas sometime hair loss is salvageable by fixing diet, using better shampoo, not making tight hair, other times, more robust forms of treatment from the skin specialist in Lahore are needed.
One such common treatment route is PRP.
What is PRP?
Short for platelet rich plasma, PRP therapy is a treatment aimed at improving the symptoms of alopecia and pattern baldness. Unlike hair transplant, PRP is an easy procedure that does not require comprehensive surgical treatment.
In this procedure, not only is the lack of hair addressed, but it also helps in preventing hair fall as well. It is often resorted to when topical sprays and medicines fail.
PRP is resorted to due to its ability to promote wound healing. This plasma also contents high concentrations of the important proteins like platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), epidermal growth factor (EGF) amongst others.
All these growth factors help in the development of hair follicle, and thus together they stimulate hair production.
What happens in PRP procedure?
Although the process is not long, PRP requires commitment of at least 4 weeks. Once the process is completed, it needs to be revisited after 4 or 6 months, depending on the process and the doctor.
However, since it’s a fairly simple procedure, there is not much cutting and nipping that is done. First, blood is drawn and centrifuged. This filtering process helps in the extraction of the platelet-rich plasma.
Then, PRP is taken and injected in the bald patches. The rest is your body’s job to take up the plasma and breed new hair.
Is PRP effective?
The jury is still out on whether PRP is 100% effective against hair loss, but there exists promising research to back its effectiveness.
According to study published in Journal of Cutaneous and Aesthetic Surgery, PRP helped increase the number of hair follicles and also decreased hair fall.
Similarly, according to another research present in the Asian Journal of Transfusion Science, PRP was effective for also increasing the hair thickness and strength, alongside the count.
Moreover, PRP is also superior to the topical treatments used otherwise, mainly, minoxidil. Not only is the result better, but minoxidil has side-effects that include headache and hair growth in other regions of the body.
It is also more effective than the oral medicine –finasteride—in terms of better outcome, and lesser side-effects.
Finasteride also leads to problems like loss of sexual drive, affects the development of male genitals in the fetal stage when consumed by pregnant women etc. Therefore, PRP is also better as opposed to its alternatives.
Who should not be getting PRP?
Not everyone is eligible for this treatment. PRP is off-limits to those who are taking blood thinners, are heavy smokers or have a history of substance or alcohol abuse.
Similarly, this treatment is also off-limits to people who have certain diseases like cancer, chronic liver disease, thyroid disease, sepsis, skin disease, or metabolic disorder.
Furthermore, people with blood disorders and diseases like platelet dysfunction syndromes, hemodynamic instability etc. also should not opt for this treatment. Those with low-platelet count are also not suggested this treatment.
What are the side-effects of PRP?
Even though the procedure is relatively simple, it still has risks of its own. Due to the frequent need to draw blood and injecting in the requisite area, PRP can lead to injury to the blood vessels and even nerves.
Moreover, use of needles comes with risks of its own, like infection, calcification. Scar tissue can also form due to repeated trauma to the skin. Some people might also be allergic to the anesthesia used, unbeknownst to them, leading to further problems.
PRP is less dangerous than hair transplant. It is also at times more effective than the medicines used to alopecia. The downside is that it is in fact high maintenance procedure. Moreover, PRP experience also varies from person to person; some benefit greatly whereas for others, it is a bust.
Therefore, it is best to discuss the merits and demerits of this procedure with a competent skin specialist in Islamabad first, before opting for the procedure.