Menopause. Genetics. Age. Hormones. These are just a fraction of common factors associated with hair thinning and hair loss in both men and women. DFW Style Daily’s newest discovery is a revolutionary procedure gaining rapid traction and we just had to dish about it. Surprisingly, it stimulates hair growth naturally from one of the unlikeliest of places – your own blood. So for now, bypass the Rogaine, put down the Minoxidil, and look past the Propecia, because a new and improved therapy for receding hair is now on the rise.
Categorized as Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy (“PRP”), the hair stimulant procedure was once originally designed for wound healing and pain control as early as the 1970s. The procedure, produced from one’s own blood, now has the discoverable effects for regenerating hair growth. As a new deviation of the treatment surfaces locally, residents experiencing hair thinning such as Andrea McIntyre, are true testaments to the positive effects of PRP and even moreso, crediting this to a higher quality of life.
“I was never told that I would have receding hair at the end of menopause,” McIntyre recounts. “I noticed general thinning and hair loss. I then noticed the receding line around the temple. I thought it was a function of age. I had tried over-the-counter products and advertised shampoos and nothing was working.”
PRP treatments for hair regrowth utilizes plasma from the patient’s own blood, that are then injected into the scalp where the thinning is most prevalent. Dr. Joseph Yaker (pictured above) of the Texas Center for Hair Restoration in Plano, is one of the few medical practitioners in Texas to also add in amniotic stem cells to PRP treatments, for extra added protein.
According to Dr. Yaker, while the procedure is not intended to treat permanent balding, the PRP method with amniotic stem cell therapy, acts as “espresso does with coffee.” The extra added boost from the amniotic stem cells provide a richer supply of proteins and growth factors back into areas where hair loss is dominant.
On average, the outpatient, in-office PRP treatment takes an hour, with minimal redness and tenderness to the affected areas. As with McIntyre, she received her treatment on a normal work day and went back to work donning a baseball cap shortly thereafter. While her experience produced mild scalp sensitivity for a week, the PRP patient says, “It was all worth it.”
Results are normally seen after 2 PRP sessions performed at 4 weeks apart. According to his findings, Dr. Yaker documents that his patients typically notice thicker and longer hair roughly 6 – 10 weeks following the second PRP injection. Annual maintenance is highly recommended as results last on average for 9 – 12 months. Should potential candidates adapt the adage that beauty is pain for this procedure? Dr. Yaker alludes “no.” Aside from slight tenderness and mild bruising, Dr. Yaker adds, “[PRP] doesn’t cause harm to your body. Because it’s your own blood, it does not cause harm.”
For McIntyre, the annual maintenance and associated costs for PRP hair therapy (approximately $2899 for 2 sessions) are but a small investment to pay for the restoration of her overall confidence. “As a woman, hair is a much [larger] part of my look than for a man,” she says. “I’m not defined by my hair, but it matters to me more than most men I know. I feel more confident and I look better. Is it dramatic? No. But I feel like my hair is healthier, stronger, and fuller.”
As with Dr. Yaker and other practitioners performing PRP therapy, the rebirth of confidence within patients is ultimately key. And while not yet approved by the FDA, this off-label treatment poses no harm. “I have proof in pictures,” Dr. Yaker says. “I have a list of men and women on my liason list, and patients can ask them questions. Because it’s your own blood [for PRP], it does not cause harm.”
And there you have it, the proof no longer lies in the pudding folks – it’s definitely in the pictures and in your own blood.
Last three images used courtesy of Dr. Yaker for Texas Center for Hair Restoration.