Q: I have read conflicting reports on the use of PRP to treat hair loss. What is your assessment? Are there any research publications that suggest it does work?
A: Two recent studies published in 2014 have presented preliminary evidence that platelet rich plasma (PRP) therapy may stop or reverse genetic hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) in both males and females.
The first study, published in the medical journal Dermatologic Surgery, found at least some improvement in male and female patients with androgenetic alopecia. This study concluded that 47% of those patients experienced at least moderate to very good improvement, ((Schiavone G, Raskovic D, Greco J, Abeni D. Platelet-rich plasma for androgenetic alopecia: a pilot study. Dermatol Surg. 2014 Sep; 40(9):1010-9)) a level that the researchers defined as “clinically important.” Because this was just a pilot study without a control group, the authors could not reliably claim that PRP was effective in treating hair loss.
A second study, published in the journal BioMed Research International, concluded that treatments of platelet-rich plasma stimulated hair growth in men with pattern hair loss. ((V. Cervelli, S. Garcovich, A. Bielli, G. Cervelli, B. C. Curcio, M. G. Scioli, A. Orlandi, P. Gentile. “The effect of autologous activated platelet rich plasma (AA-PRP) injection on pattern hair loss: clinical and histomorphometric evaluation,” BioMed Research International Volume 2014.)) In this clinical study, the researchers found a statistically significant increase in both hair density and terminal hairs.
While more comprehensive testing needs to be done, these studies provide preliminary evidence that platelet rich plasma therapy may stimulate hair growth in patients with male or female pattern baldness.
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