- Androgenetic alopecia is an often hereditary condition with thinning of the hair into vellus hairs which occurs in males and females according to a male pattern (Hamilton classification) or a female pattern (ludwig classification)
- It is psychologically devastating and treatments include topical (minoxidil), oral (finasteride) treatments sometimes so ineffective that the only solution is wearing a wig.
- Mesotherapy has been used for over 40 years and consists of local injections but little evidence to this day exists that it would be effective. More recently* platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections have been used for this indication (it was previously used mainly in joint conditions)
- Even with a relatively short time* it has been used, evidence (although not enough yet) shows that it might show some effectiveness.
Study 1: Platelet-rich plasma for androgenetic alopecia: a pilot study.
Schiavone G, Raskovic D, Greco J, Abeni D.
Dermatol Surg. 2014 Sep;40(9):1010-9. doi: 10.1097/01.DSS.0000452629.76339.2b.
- 64 patients
- Two injections of a leukocyte platelet-rich plasma with the addition of concentrated plasmatic proteins were administered at baseline and after 3 months (single spin at baseline and double-spin centrifugation at 3 months). Photographs were taken at baseline and after 6 months, and 2 independent evaluators rated them.
- Results show that some improvement was observed in almost all patients and the proportion of patients improving importantly clinical was 40.6% for one evaluator and 54.7% for the other.
Study 2: Platelet-rich plasma in androgenic alopecia: myth or an effective tool.
Khatu SS, More YE, Gokhale NR, Chavhan DC, Bendsure N.
J Cutan Aesthet Surg. 2014 Apr;7(2):107-10. doi: 10.4103/0974-2077.138352.
- 11 patients suffering from hair loss due to androgenic alopecia and not responding to 6 months treatment with minoxidil and finasteride were included in this study. The hair pull test was performed before every treatment session.
- A volume of 2-3 cc PRP was injected in the scalp. The treatment was repeated every two weeks, for a total of four times. The outcome was assessed after 3 months by clinical examination, macroscopic photos, hair pull test and patient’s overall satisfaction.
- Results after 3 weeks show:
- a significant reduction in hair loss was observed between first and fourth injection.
- Hair count increased from average number of 71 hair follicular units to 93 hair follicular units. -Therefore, average mean gain is 22.09 follicular units per cm(2.)
- After the fourth session, the pull test was negative in 9 patients.
Conclusion: These two studies suggest that PRP might be effective in the treatment of androgenetic (androgenic) alopecia. Although study 2 is stronger evidence-based medicine than study 1, further studies, such as randomized-control ones are warranted to further investigate this method.
*At the time of publication
Article selection: Prof Dr Jean-Hilaire Saurat – dermatologist. Geneva, Switzerland
Source of information: the 2 aforementioned studies
Source of information: here