Hair loss can happen to adults for various reasons. While some of these causes are preventable, others cases can be harder to treat like androgenic alopecia where there’s no cure for gradual hair loss as you age. However, there are treatment options that help slow down or pause hair loss like platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, which are popular among those who want hair regrowth. However, not all hair loss issues have the same root cause and PRP injections may not always work on everyone.
So who are the best candidates for PRP injections? While PRP injections are mostly safe because of their autologous substance, PRP is best for those experiencing genetic pattern baldness, as well as those who want to complement other treatments. If you’re interested in getting PRP injections to improve your hair growth, it’s best to consult with your provider to get a hair treatment plan that best suits your wants and needs.
Best Candidates for PRP Injections for Hair Loss
Many people can receive PRP injections for a number of treatments, including joint and muscle injuries, post-surgery treatment, skin rejuvenation, and more. Because PRP is autologous and made from your own blood, it’s safe to use for anyone and the risk of adverse reactions is very low. In short, anyone experiencing hair loss can safely try PRP injections.
But if you’re wondering who the best candidates are in the sense that it can have the best results, an ideal candidate to receive PRP injections to improve hair growth can be narrowed down to two types of patients: men who are suffering from male pattern baldness, and patients who have had hair transplants.
Patients Experiencing Hair Loss Due to Male Pattern Baldness
Genetic hair loss is more common among men than women, which is why male pattern baldness is much better understood than female pattern baldness. While the effects of PRP injections are still inconclusive for female pattern baldness, some research suggests that PRP injections can help treat male pattern baldness. One study in 2014 found that injecting up to 3 cubic centimeters of PRP into the scalp of men with androgenic alopecia every 2 weeks for 3 months increased the average number of hair follicles in the area.
PRP injections can potentially help male pattern baldness based on what it can do for your hair growth and scalp. Because of male pattern baldness, your body produces the DHT hormone, which is responsible for suppressing hair growth factors and stunting the growth of the key hair growth factors that promote healthy hair growth. The PRP injections introduce more platelets to the dormant areas of your scalp, which promotes healthy cell repair and cell growth. Through this, the blood flow in the area can improve hair growth through newer cells in the area.
Patients Who Have Had Hair Transplants
If you’re planning to undergo hair transplant surgery, PRP injections can complement the effects of your hair treatment by helping with cell growth and tissue generation in the area, which can improve your therapy for hair loss by the way your scalp and hair follicles manage healthy hair growth.
After a successful hair transplant, your scalp should accept the donor hair follicles and use them as a means to reproduce similarly healthy hairs in the surrounding areas. PRP injections can help this process by stimulating cell growth and regeneration, which can boost the effects healthy donor follicles can have on your hair.
Who Shouldn’t Get PRP Injections?
While PRP injections are safe for generally healthy patients, some people experiencing hair loss may not benefit from PRP injections or are at risk of adverse effects. Like many injectable treatments, PRP injections produce minimal pain and have a fairly short healing process. But if you have a medical history of certain conditions or are taking certain medicines, you shouldn’t get PRP injections.
People Taking Blood-Thinning Medication
If you’re currently taking blood thinners or medications that can have blood-thinning effects, PRP injections may not be a good treatment for you. Aside from the increased risk of bleeding and bruising after your injections, this can have a negative effect on your injection. Wait until after you’ve stopped taking your medication.
Patients with Bleeding, Blood, and Clotting Disorders
Just like those taking anticoagulants, those with disorders in their blood may not be a safe candidate for PRP injections. PRP is made from your own blood, so if your blood has clotting problems, a low platelet count, or a platelet dysfunction, it may not be a good option to treat your scalp with injections.
There is also a risk of damaging blood vessels during an injection, which can lead to adverse effects. For best results, choose a highly-trained and experienced specialist to avoid damaging your blood vessels, which is very preventable especially under the right hands.
There are two reasons why smokers aren’t the best candidates for PRP injections. First, smoking can affect your circulation and how much oxygen goes into circulation, which reduces the full potential of your body’s circulatory system. This means circulation around your scalp isn’t getting the oxygen it needs to function at its best. As a result, hair and hair follicles can’t grow properly even with the boost PRP injections can provide.
Second, smoking can damage your hair follicles. The residue from smoking can damage your DNA, which can affect the way proteins build your hair from the roots. On top of this causing weaker hair to grow, smoking disrupts the normal hair growth cycle and can lead to hair maturing and falling off much faster than it normally should. So if you do get PRP injections but continue to smoke, the effects of your habit negate the potential benefits PRP can do to your hair growth.
People with Skin and Scalp Infections
Don’t get facial or scalp injections if you currently have an active bacterial infection on your face and scalp. Injections while these are present increase the risk of bacteria penetrating your skin, entering your body, and causing internal infections. Seek treatment for your infection first and wait until you’ve finished your treatment and your infection has fully healed before seeking PRP injections for hair growth treatments.
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While PRP injections are safe treatments for most people, it’s best for those experiencing certain kinds of hair loss and undergoing hair restoration treatments. If you’re facing male pattern baldness or are planning to undergo hair transplants, talk to a doctor about getting PRP injections to boost your hair regeneration.
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