Hair restoration for men
95% of men suffer from hair loss during adult life and 95% of male hair loss is due to male pattern baldness (MPB). Blame your parents for inheriting the genetic make-up that leads to this. It is known that continual exposure of hair follicles to male hormones, in particular one of the breakdown products of testosterone (DHT- DiHydroTestosterone) causes thinning of the hair. The effect is actually on the hair follicle. A healthy young hair follicle will produce 3 or 4 healthy hairs but as the follicle ages over time in response to the DHT it starts to produce fewer hairs, eventually only one and the hair gets thinner and shorter. Eventually the hair follicle shrinks down completely and vanishes. Along with any hair. Male pattern baldness manifests as a particular pattern of hair loss on the scalp, can be classified in severity as below in the Norwood classification and may start as early in life as late teens or early twenties. The sooner it starts the more severe it comes.
The bad news. Once all your hair is lost on the scalp due to MPB the hair follicles have gone, and hair growth cannot be restimulated.
The good news. If you have thin hair left, then stimulating the follicles can cause regrowth. More hairs per follicle and thicker hairs in each follicle. If you have no hair follicles left in parts of your scalp then stimulation cannot work, but hair transplant is a good option.
Hair restoration for women
Women do not often suffer from the same pattern of baldness as men, however thinning of the hair is very common and is usually also due to aging. For women losing all the hair is very unusual and hair follicles almost always remain. Therefore, hair follicles that have started to produce only 1-2 hairs per follicle rather than the normal 3-4 and ones where the hair itself has also become thinner and shorter can be stimulated to produce more and thicker hair strands. Hair follicle stimulation in women can be successful in restoring more and thicker hair.
Hair follicle stimulation
Platelet rich plasma is the new treatment which is generating a lot of interest and has good evidence to support its use in hair restoration. Platelets harvested and concentrated from your own blood contain very powerful natural growth factors that stimulate many tissues in repair and rejuvenation including hair follicles. The process is simple and requires 3-4 treatments spaced 3 weeks apart. Your blood is collected, we prepare the Platelet rich plasma in house using a centrifuge and gel filtration, we then re-inject the platelets around the hair follicles which are triggered to release the growth factors.
Hair follicle function can be increased by reducing the suppressive effect of DHT. Some natural formulations contain suppressives of DHT such as saw palmetto and pumpkin seed oil. Effects are variable and unreliable, but the prescription drug Finesteride given in the right dose can suppress the breakdown of Testosterone to DHT and prevent deterioration in the follicles and in many examples increase the activity so growing more and thicker hairs. Taken once daily improvements in hair quality are usually seen within a couple of months.
PRP therapy, Finesteride & Minoxidil
Minoxidil was originally launched into the pharmacological world as an anti-hypertensive, but doctors quickly realised that men were experiencing hair regrowth. Its exact function is not known but it may stimulate the follicles directly. There is little evidence that other stimulants such as caffeine make any difference.
There are other causes of hair loss which occur in some medical conditions such as under active thyroid glands, nutrient deficiency and local trauma or inflammatory skin conditions. These can usually be ruled out with some simple blood tests and by examining the pattern of loss.
For most men or women, a course of platelet rich plasma therapy combined with Finesteride and or Minoxidil will give the best chance of hair recovery. We can advise on the best course of treatment for you or your partner. A combination of these three most successful scientifically tested treatments is usually recommended.