Many hair loss patients rely on PRP therapy when it comes to restoring the natural length and thickness of their hair. But this is only one of the different types of regenerative medicine therapies that help patients regrow hair on their scalp, as many hair loss patients are also trying stem cell therapy for hair loss.
So which between platelet-rich plasma therapies and PRP therapy with stem cells is better for hair loss? PRP hair loss treatment is already effective in stimulating hair growth, but adding stem cell therapy boosts its healing effects. This results in healthier hair follicles that produce thicker and healthier hair shafts.
Should You Combine Stem Cell With PRP for Hair Loss?
According to the International Society of Hair Loss and Restoration Surgery, around 35 million men and 21 million women experience some degree of hair loss in their scalp. A person’s chances of losing more hair than growing on their scalp increase as they get older because of hormonal imbalances and other changes their body goes through.
Although hair transplantation surgery is one of the most common hair loss treatments available, many patients aren’t prepared for the risk and downtime that come with it. Many of them turn to minimally invasive procedures like oral medications, topical medications, PRP therapy, and even stem cell therapy to restore the hair volume on their scalp instead.
Since PRP for hair loss and stem cell therapy are both regenerative medicine therapies with promising results, combining both procedures can enhance the effects of the other and help patients grow thicker and longer hair more quickly. But to better understand how these treatments work together, it’s important to know about how they work alone first.
How PRP Therapy for Hair Loss Works
PRP therapy is a non-surgical procedure that’s popular for its angiogenic potential. The growth factors found in the patient’s platelet-rich plasma accelerate the healing of chronic wounds in the endothelial cells and other treatment areas.
There are many pieces of research that present high-quality evidence of the efficacy of platelet-rich plasma therapies for treating ligament injuries and degenerative diseases, which often require orthopedic surgery.
When injected into the scalp, PRP therapy increases blood circulation in the area and stimulates the human hair follicles. This causes them to produce thicker and longer hair shafts, slowly restoring the hair volume on the scalp.
Platelet-Rich Plasma Source
Platelet-rich plasma is derived from the patient’s own blood sample. The treatment is a 3-step procedure in which the provider draws blood from the patient’s arm and processes it in the centrifuge. This separates the layer of platelet concentration from the rest of the blood that contains white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelet-poor plasma.
The autologous platelet-rich plasma of a patient contains around 5 times the amount of platelets in the blood. This specific concentration in platelet of the blood also contains cytokine concentrations and different growth factors that are essential to healthy hair growth, such as keratinocyte growth factor, vascular endothelial growth factor, transforming growth factor, insulin-like growth factor 1, platelet-derived growth factor, and more.
PRP hair loss treatment is a 3-step, minimally invasive procedure that encourages natural hair growth. The peripheral blood is first drawn from the patient’s arm and then processed in the centrifuge to separate the platelet-rich plasma layer. Once the platelet-rich plasma is obtained from the blood sample, the solution is then injected into the thinning areas of the scalp.
Since the entire procedure doesn’t require plastic surgery or hair transplantation, most patients return home on the same day as their appointment. Most patients require multiple treatment sessions to experience the best hair regrowth results after their platelet-rich therapies for hair loss.
Results and Risks
The results usually take a few weeks to start showing because it takes time for the activated platelet-rich plasma to encourage hair growth. The good news is that the initial results of the PRP treatment gradually get better over the next few weeks. Patients may notice thicker, longer, and stronger hair on their scalp a few weeks after their treatment session.
Platelet-rich plasma therapies produce the best results for patients who are still in the early stages of their hair loss. It’s easier for the PRP and growth factors to stimulate the active hair follicles instead of revitalizing the inactive ones. Patients who already have severe hair loss may still benefit from the treatment, but it’s difficult to restore the old state of the scalp.
Patients aren’t at risk of rejecting the concentration of platelet solution or getting a communicable disease from it because the solution was derived from their own blood samples. But like autologous blood injections and other common injections, PRP therapy also has a risk of injury to blood vessels, calcification at the injection site, scar tissue formation, or infection.
Some patients may also experience mild but common side effects like slight bleeding, swelling, pain, and redness in the treated area. They usually subside after a few hours or days, but call a healthcare provider immediately if they persist or worsen.
How Stem Cell Therapy for Hair Loss Works
Stem cell treatment for hair loss encourages adult stem cells in the body to increase blood supply in the treatment site to remove the damaged tissues for an accelerated healing process. It regenerates the inactive or dormant hair follicles in the scalp to increase the number of hairs and improve their quality. Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells decrease the rate of cell death.
Stem Cell Source
Adipose tissue-derived stem cells are a type of mesenchymal stem cell that can replicate itself, which is extremely important when it comes to repairing damages or replacing dead cells in different parts of the body. These cells have been the subject of research for many health conditions, including hair loss. Stromal cells used in hair restoration treatments are usually derived from embryos of plants and animals in a laboratory that isn’t viable.
Stem cell treatments for androgenic alopecia typically require at least 2 appointments: one for harvesting the hair follicles and the other for injecting the adult stem cells into the treatment areas.
During the first session, the doctor looks for some healthy follicle mesenchymal stem cells from the hair follicles on the scalp. Once they manage to harvest enough, the follicles are cultured in a laboratory where it produces more cells.
When these adult stem cells are ready to be injected into the scalp, the provider calls the patient again to schedule the next treatment session. This time, the cultured hair follicles are injected directly into the problem areas of the scalp.
Results and Risks
Like PRP therapy, stem cell therapy also results in even and natural-looking hair growth. It also needs multiple treatment sessions spaced a few weeks apart to achieve the best results. Stem cell therapy works best for patients who are suffering from alopecia areata, hormone-related hair loss, and female or male pattern baldness (androgenic alopecia).
Stem cell hair treatments don’t leave prominent scarring as hair transplant surgeries might, but there’s still some temporary scabbing because of the microneedles used during the treatment. It’s also not as risky as surgical procedures, but patients might still experience mild side effects like pain, swelling, and minor bleeding in the treated areas.
Is it Safe to Combine Both Treatments?
Since both PRP therapy and stem cell treatment for hair loss are minimally invasive, many patients are wondering whether it’s safe to undergo these treatments at the same time. Combining these biologic therapies shouldn’t cause adverse events that might affect the other, but patients should still make sure to get them both from trusted providers.
One of the most popular kinds of stem cell therapy for androgenic alopecia that’s often combined with PRP treatments is the ACell MatriStem MicroMatrix Technology. Its choice of activation method uses a uniquely formulated powder that stimulates the stem cells in the treated area. The ACell is suspended in the PRP solution before it’s injected into the scalp. This increases the efficacy of platelet concentration for hair loss.
What Makes Combined Treatments Better?
Stem cell therapy enhances the effects of platelet-rich plasma in hair regrowth treatments on the scalp by speeding up the healing process and stimulating the dormant hair follicles. Here are other advantages that make combined treatments a lot better than PRP therapy alone:
- More Cost-Effective Than PRP Treatments Alone: While the cost of stem cell therapy with PRP is higher than PRP alone, it also requires fewer treatment sessions. This allows patients to save more money that is otherwise spent on more PRP treatments in the long run.
- Quicker Healing Time: One of the strengths of stem cell therapy is that it significantly cuts down the healing time needed wherever it is used. This is also true for hair loss treatments. The stem cells repair the damaged cells in the area and help the PRP growth factor concentrations stimulate hair growth of the hair follicles.
- Safer Than Hair Transplant Surgery: Both PRP and stem cell therapy are low-risk yet effective hair loss procedures that are safer than surgical procedures. Combining them won’t increase your risk of developing side effects or serious complications.
- Sustained and Long-Lasting Results: Hair regrowth after stem cell therapy plus PRP treatment is sustained over time compared to the natural hair growth of PRP treatments alone. Some patients might only need to return to their provider once a year to maintain their results.
PRP With Stem Cell: How Does it Work?
After knowing about the benefits of combining PRP therapy with stem cell treatment for hair loss, the next step is to know about how the combined treatments work, what kind of results and risks to expect, and whether you’re a good candidate for this type of procedure.
Who’s a Good Candidate?
PRP with stem cells for hair loss is a safe and effective treatment for men and women suffering from pattern hair loss, as long as they have good overall health. It’s a great alternative for patients who aren’t ready or qualified for a surgical procedure.
Patients who are still in their early stage of hair loss benefit the most from this treatment because it stops hair thinning while revitalizing the hair follicles in the scalp. The main goal of managing genetic hair loss is to stop hair loss for as long as possible and avoid aggressive treatments like hair transplantation.
PRP therapy combined with stem cells is also a great treatment option for patients who want to manage hair loss without using medications like minoxidil or finasteride. These medications may cause itching, skin irritation, and even headaches for some patients.
How is the Treatment Performed?
During the initial consultation with the provider, they usually explain how the treatment works so patients should make sure to ask all their questions during this time. If you’re qualified for the procedure, you can schedule the treatment session when it’s most convenient for you.
On the day of the treatment, the provider starts by cleansing the scalp with an antiseptic wash. A numbing cream is applied to the injection sites to help minimize the pain and discomfort. While waiting for the anesthetic to take effect, the patient’s blood sample is drawn and processed to obtain the PRP layer.
The local anesthetic is removed from the scalp before ACell with platelet-rich plasma formulations is injected into the scalp. The entire treatment session only takes less than an hour, depending on the number of injections needed. Patients usually return home after their treatment session, since the procedure doesn’t need a long downtime.
What Kind of Results Should I Expect?
It takes several weeks up to a few months for the initial results of the treatment to show since it follows the normal hair growth cycle. After about 6 to 12 months, patients may notice a remarkable improvement in the length, volume, and thickness of their hair. In most cases, the receding hairline also starts to disappear as more hair occupies it.
Patients may enjoy several months of healthy hair growth before regression starts. Around this time, it’s recommended for patients to return to their provider for additional PRP with stem cell injections.
Quality Hair Loss Solutions and More at FACE Med Store
EL Exosomes Package
Pep Factor For SKIN Rejuvenation
Butterfly Needle – 23G 3/4 in. x 12 in. with sliding safety shield- Box of 100
Butterfly Needle – 25G 3/4 in. x 12 in. with sliding safety shield- Box of 100
PEP Factor Maximizer
PEP Factor Maximizer – Wholesale Only
Pep Factor For SCALP Rejuvenation
Mesenchymal stem cell therapy enhances the effects of PRP therapy for hair loss to help patients achieve better hair regrowth results. But like other hair restoration treatments, there’s still the possibility of developing some mild side effects or complications. Finding a trusted provider to administer the treatment helps minimize these risks and ensure that patients get the best results they want.
At FACE Med Store, we want to help our partner clinics and healthcare providers offer the best hair loss treatments by providing them with top-quality medical tools and supplies. From syringes to tubes used in PRP treatment, we’re here to supply clinics with everything they need to keep things running smoothly.
Know more about us and our products by contacting us today.