Almost 21 million women and 35 million men experience hair loss. Men start losing 40% of their hair once they reach the age of 35, a number that grows to 70% by the time they reach 80. Among women, the loss is almost 80% by the time they reach the age of 60. Fortunately, advancements in medicine and technology ensure there is a treatment to reverse it. For hair loss and hair thinning, there are various topical solutions, oral medications, and non-surgical treatments available. Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy (PRP) is one of the more popular treatments because it is non-invasive and non-surgical treatment and it consistently shows results.
Let’s know the difference between different hair loss treatments available in India:
Mesotherapy Vs. PRP
Mesotherapy is different from PRP in two ways: First, it involves very superficial injections. Also, while PRP injections use platelets, mesotherapy injections use diluted drugs such as minoxidil, vitamins, nutrients and growth factors.
- Both PRP and Mesotherapy have been around since the 1970s. However, there’s been a lot more research into the safety and effectiveness of PRP than in Mesotherapy. Though mesotherapy has been around since 1970, there is still insufficient scientific data regarding its safety and effectiveness. Dermatologists consider PRP to be a lot more effective than mesotherapy.
- PRP is less time-consuming and a lot cheaper than mesotherapy.
- PRP is extremely safe with no side effects as it uses the client’s platelets in the procedure. On the other hand, mesotherapy uses customized injections of various ingredients, which may have some side effects.
- PRP can be used alongside hair transplant procedures while mesotherapy cannot.
PRP Vs. Stem Cell Therapy
Much like platelets, stem cells are instrumental in healing injured and inflamed tissues. Stem cells can convert into any cell that the body needs at any point. Their versatility has made them popular recently. When stem cells are injected into the scalp, they substitute injured or damaged cells. This way, stem cell therapy works on tissues that would not have had a chance to heal otherwise. The key differences between PRP and stem cell therapy for hair loss are:
- In PRP the platelet-rich plasma comes from the client’s own body. In stem cell therapy, stem cells come from unviable embryos and foeti produced in laboratories from mice hair and green apples.
- Since PRP treatment makes use of the client’s platelets and plasma, there is a very low risk of rejection by the body. This is not certain with stem cells.
- As PRP injects platelets almost immediately after the centrifugation process, we are certain that there is a high concentration of live platelets in the mix.
With the time transportation and extraction take, we can’t be sure that stem cells will remain live until they are injected. At most, there may be a few growth factors, but those won’t be as effective.
PRP Vs. Hair Transplant
Hair transplants are an invasive surgical procedure involving stripping a small part of skin along with hair grafts from your scalp (typically from the sides or back) and transplanting it to the affected area. In other words, you move your hair from one part of the scalp to another part that may or may not regrow hair.
- PRP is non-invasive and non-surgical, involving local anesthesia at most. Hair transplants are not.
- In hair transplants, there is a chance that scalp skin might reject the hair graft, in which case, the treatment will not work. In PRP, however, the client’s platelets are used, so there is a low chance of rejection.
- The benefits offered by these two treatments are very different from one another. For bald spots with no scope of hair regrowth, a hair transplant is the only option, and PRP would not help much. PRP will only help in stimulating hair follicles and promoting a healthy scalp to increase hair growth in thinning areas of the scalp as well as transplant.
Here is an interesting infographic:
PRP Treatment Vs. Minoxidil
Minoxidil is a drug taken orally or topically applied to the scalp. For hair loss, its dosage and directions of use are to be prescribed by a dermatologist. Minoxidil is a vasodilator. Though both PRP and minoxidil are effective hair regrowth treatments, studies prove that PRP treatment combined with minoxidil shows better results than minoxidil alone.
In one study, 220 males in the age group of 20-50 years androgenic alopecia were divided into two groups. One group was treated using PRP therapy while the other group was treated using minoxidil (5-10%). The results showed that 76% of the cases treated by PRP treatment were effective whereas only 48% of the cases treated by minoxidil were effective.
Many studies are concluding that PRP in combination with Minoxidil gets even better results. PRP is usually recommended as adjunctive therapy along with minoxidil.
PRP Vs. Finasteride
Finasteride is a 5-alpha reductase enzyme inhibitor approved only for men looking to treat hair loss and that too at a dose of 1mg. Like Minoxidil, it is taken orally or applied topically.
1. Finasteride is approved only for men, while PRP treatment works for both men and women.
2. PRP therapy is extremely safe, with no reported side effects. Finasteride may not work alone, and because of certain side effects in very few cases, there is a widespread hesitation to take the drug.
PRP Vs. Laser For Hair Loss
- PRP uses client’s blood platelets; centrifuged and activated to induce growth factors in the scalp which reduces hair loss and stimulates hair regrowth. Laser therapy uses the light of a certain defined wavelength to target the affected areas of the scalp to improve blood supply and circulation and thus decreases hair loss.
- Lasers work by reducing inflammation and improving the supply of energy (ATP) to hair cells. PRP, on the other hand, stimulates hair cells by supplying a variety of growth factors to promote multiplication.
- When compared, both the treatments have a similar way of addressing the hair loss problem, as both work towards increasing the blood flow to the scalp. However, platelet-rich plasma shows results faster.
PRP Vs. PRFM Treatment
Platelet-rich Fibrin Matrix, or PRFM, is a slightly updated version of PRP. Fibrins are an insoluble protein formed during the clotting of blood and found in blood plasma. They, along with platelets, help in wound healing. In PRFM, a more activated form of centrifuged platelets is combined and concentrated into a fibrin matrix. This is achieved by not mixing the blood sample collected with an anticoagulant.
Platelet-rich fibrin matrix treatment is amongst the latest treatments for hair loss., which is injected into the affected area of the scalp to induce proliferation and tissue regeneration, leading to drastic improvement in the hair loss condition. Both PRP and PRFM treatments are effective in getting visible results within 4-6 sessions.
In short, the PRFM treatment is slightly different from the PRP treatment. However, both are equally effective.
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Is PRP A Permanent Treatment For Hair Loss?
Hair loss can be a challenging issue to deal with, but with all the treatments that are available, it is not difficult to overcome. When the PRP treatment is used in cases where the cause of hair loss is genetics, the results may not be permanent. However, they are long-lasting. For medical conditions, the PRP treatment will provide permanent results. The results achieved can be maintained by continuous usage of minoxidil.