Ahead of the CURVE
Hair loss treatment without surgery and drugs
Millions of Americans experience hair loss due to genetics, hormones, trauma and other reasons. But, regardless of the cause, the only proven treatments – beyond the numerous non-medical claims out there – were surgery, medication or both.
But now there is a new medical-based technique, called Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy, which stimulates dormant hair follicles. Bergen County plastic surgeon Dr. William K. Boss performs this treatment, taking “two vials of blood from a patient, separating the plasma and then injecting into the scalp to stimulate growth.”
The major advantage to using PRP is that there is no downtime and there are minimal side effects.
Boss treats both men and women with PRP. Boss notes that women “generally have fewer choices and efficacy with traditional hair loss treatments because women tend to have thinning hair and a reduction in the number of follicles throughout the entire scalp. This makes hair transplant not a great option. Also, my clinical impression is that the hair that grows in after PRP is thicker and is more resilient.”
Boss points out that since “basically everything used is autologous – that is, the plasma is yours and is simply being moved from one part of your body to another – there is an excellent safety profile from what we know thus far in use of PRP.”
The number of treatments required depends upon the individual, but treatments are usually administered once every four-to-six weeks for about four treatments. “After four treatments, we reassess,” Boss says. “Patients typically see a change in one or two treatments. One patient told me, ‘After two treatments, I definitely noticed a major difference and even my barber has noticed growth and asked me what I was doing.’”
Boss also uses PRP in cell therapy to treat facial lines and sun damage, a type of treatment that reportedly has become a favorite among celebrities. It has been used for a long time elsewhere in the body to help heal orthopedic injuries. The New York Times featured PRP in a “Skin Deep” column, which discussed new treatments for thinning hair for women. ABC News also discussed this promising advance in a segment on “The Morning Stir.”