By Charles Mok, D.O.
No matter what side of the political fence you are on, we can all agree on one thing: Donald Trump has a full head of hair! Last year, the New York Times questioned whether “The Donald” wears a rug. At a political stop, he had a volunteer come up and check. Sure enough, that hair is all his own.
Then in September of this year, while on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Donald allowed Jimmy to do the same test to PROVE that is the real thing. No, it’s not a squirrel sitting on his head, nor is it a toupee. It is actually Donald’s own locks.
Not all of us are as lucky as Donald. Men and women with thinning hair are constantly trying various FDA-approved medications, over the counter remedies and potions. Another thing we can all agree on? These rarely work.
What has emerged as a relative slam dunk recently is called Platelet Rich Plasma or “PRP for short. PRP was originally intended to heal orthopedic injuries, but has been found to stimulate dormant hair growth by increasing blood supply. This treatment appears to last about 2-3 years and can be repeated.
While research continues, preliminary results over the past few years show that PRP does cause hair growth in thinning areas. In areas that are completely bald, the results are not as promising. But in thinning areas, there is a substantial increase in hair counts and thickness that can be seen in as little as a month, with continued improvement over one year.
The best part about this is the simplicity of the process. The patients’ own blood is drawn like any other blood sample and then placed into a special container, which contains a special anti-clot compound. This will keep the blood from coagulating. It is then spun in a centrifuge using a process that allows the technician to separate out the platelets.
For those of you who do not know, platelets are cells in your blood that are designed for healing. These powerhouse cells are designed to heal, so they are packed with growth factors. For instance, if you get an injury, it’s platelets that come to the rescue and provoke new tissue growth. This is why platelets are used to heal orthopedic injuries.
When platelets are injected into the scalp, they restore blood flow to a special tiny organ called the Dermal Papilla. This tiny organ stimulates the follicle to grow new hair.
Studies were done in animals to find out why it works, and then in humans to verify that this is a safe and effective treatment.
At Allure Medical in Metro Detroit, we perform three PRP treatments spaced apart by a month each. The cost is $2,000 for all three treatments. We have performed thousands of treatments and have noted almost no instances of the treatments not working. In other words, it doesn’t always work, but it does by far most times.
Here are some examples of the amazing results we have seen with PRP.