Platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP, is a procedure that is commonly used to aid in soft tissue recovery. Though it has been used in sports medicine and dental and oral surgery since the 1990s, it hasn’t been until recently that PRP has been considered for other uses. Berlet Plastic Surgery is now offering PRP for hair restoration.

If you are considering PRP to help with hair loss, you probably have a few questions about what the procedure entails and whether it can benefit you. Below are five facts to check out!

What is platelet-rich plasma (PRP)?

Platelet-rich plasma, also known as autologous conditioned plasma, is a concentrate of platelet-rich plasma protein. This substance is derived from blood. The doctor then places it through a centrifuge to remove red blood cells.

In other words, plasma is the liquid portion of whole blood. It is composed largely of water and proteins, and it provides a medium for red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets to circulate through the body. Platelets, also called thrombocytes, are blood cells that cause blood clots and other necessary growth healing functions.

Platelet activation plays a key role in the body’s natural healing process.

Fact #1: Platelet-rich plasma therapy starts with your blood.

Sounds scary, doesn’t it? Don’t worry, though! It’s just like taking a blood test! PRP starts by collecting about 30 millimeters of your blood. The blood is placed in a centrifuge to separate the platelet-rich plasma from the rest of the blood. Doctors then inject the platelets into the affected area.

Fact #2: Platelets stimulate hair growth.

When the platelets are injected into the affected area – in this case, your scalp – growth factors in the platelets stimulate natural hair growth. Multiple injections may be done, but they are safe and non-surgical. The injections use your own blood so you don’t have to worry about anything foreign entering your body.

Fact #3: Platelet-rich plasma therapy can be uncomfortable at first.

It is possible for the injections to be uncomfortable, especially at first. Doctors usually use a topical anesthetic to alleviate some of the pain, but it’s possible to be put under general anesthesia. This way, you can have the injections done and not feel a thing! Talk to your doctor about what’s best for you.

Fact #4: Men and women can be treated with PRP.

Hair loss affects both men and women, so it’s reassuring that platelet-rich plasma therapy can be used for both genders. Also, you don’t have to wait until you are losing your hair to receive PRP. It works on patients who have thinning or lost hair, and it can be used with other therapies.

Fact #5: You may still need a hair transplant.

Platelet-rich plasma therapy is not necessarily a replacement for a hair transplant. It’s possible that your hair will respond enough to the therapy that you won’t need a transplant, but it’s also possible that intervention may be needed to achieve the desired results. Fortunately, you can use both treatments in conjunction with one another for improved results.

Choosing the Right Plastic Surgeon Matters

For over 20 years, Dr. Berlet and his team have treated patients in the northern NJ and NYC areas. In fact, Berlet Plastic Surgery is one of the top plastic surgery offices to offer PRP to treat hair loss and hair thinning. To learn more about whether or not you are a good candidate for the procedure, schedule your consultation today!