Stem Cell and PRP Therapy for Hair Restoration

Stem Cell and PRP Therapy for Hair Restoration

PRP therapy and stem cells injections are new exciting non-surgical options for natural hair growth and stimulation. These therapies are scientifically based hair restoration methods.

What is platelet-rich plasma (PRP)?

Platelet-rich plasma is a type of therapy that involves injecting concentrated platelets into a body region. The patient’s own blood is draw and concentrated in the laboratory by centrifugation. This process concentrates useful cell components of the blood so they can be injected into areas of the body damaged or injured.

How do platelets help grow hair?

Platelets are biological blood constituents that do not have a nucleus. These blood components help with clotting. Every platelet is a biochemical storehouse for signaling and regulating growth-factor molecules, which help heal tissues and repair damage. The growth-factor molecules in the platelets work to promote blood vessel growth, stimulate cell replication, regulate normal physiology of every body cell, and promote growth of specialized cells.

How many different growth factors are in platelet-rich plasma preparations?

Six different growth factors are in PRP. These include:

  • Transforming growth-factor beta (TGF-b) Promotes matrix growth and bone metabolism.
  • Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) – Promotes cell replication, blood vessel growth, and skin formation.
  • Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) – Promotes blood vessel formation.
  • Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) – Promotes the growth of specialized cells.
  • Insulin-like growth factor (IGF) – Regulates normal physiology of all cells.
  • Epidermal growth factor (EGF) – Promotes cell differentiation and growth as well as collagen formation.

How is PRP made?

The nurse will draw a few tubes of blood from your arm and place them in the centrifuge machine. After spinning for a period of time, the platelets are concentrated in the tube. The plasma with platelets is additionally prepared for injection.

How does PRP promote hair growth?

Platelet-rich plasma promotes hair growth through the action of growth factors on hair follicle stem cells. These growth factors induce follicle stem cells to shift from an inactive state (dormant) to an active state. This jump starts the process of hair production. Essentially, the growth factors “wake up” dormant hair follicles for the production of new hair growth.

Is PRP therapy effective?

In a recent research study, PRP injections were used for hair loss. At the end of three cycles of treatment, all patients had clinical improvement in the mean number of hairs, as well as increased total hair density. Microscopic examination showed an increase in epidermis thickness two weeks after the final treatment.

What are stem cells?

Stem cells are cells with specialized functions. They can divide and form more cells, which are referred to as daughter cells. These new daughter cells can become new specialized cells through a process called differentiation, which include hair follicle cells.

How do stem cells help with hair restoration?

Stem cells work to repair the scalp tissue and increase cellular function. The stem cells have the ability to turn into many other cells in the body. When injected into the scalp, they turn into dermal papilla cells that regulate growth and formation of hair follicles.

How is the stem cell injection procedure done?

The stem cells are derived from the adipose (fat) tissue of the body. These cells are removed through a mini-liposuction procedure done at the waist area, with approximately 50-100 milliliters of fat obtained. The fat is put in a centrifuge machine and spun for several minutes. The stem cells are concentrated in the tube and collected. After an activation solution is applied and then rinsed off, the stem cells are injected into the scalp skin (dermis) near the hair follicles.

Is stem cell therapy effective?

In a recent clinical study, nine patients with alopecia were injected with stem cells. At 12-weeks follow-up, they all had vellus hair growth. In six of the subjects, complete hair regrowth was observed at 12 weeks post-treatment.

Resources

Cervelli V, Garcovich S, Bielli A, et al. (2014). The Effect of Autologous Activated Platelet Rich Plasma (AA-PRP) Injection on Pattern Hair Loss: Clinical and Histomorphometric Evaluation. BioMed Research Int.
Li Y, Yan B, Wang H, et al. (2015). Hair regrowth in alopecia areata patients following Stem Cell Educator therapy. BMC, 13, 87.
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