Round Two – My Second PRP Hair Loss Treatment With Dr. Joseph Greco

by admin on March 22, 2010

Hello Everyone!

Recently I ventured back to Florida to have another PRP (platelet rich plasma) hair loss treatment with Dr. Joseph Greco. I went back at the 4 month mark, which is before the time usually recommended to patients. I did so because I was quite pleased with the results I saw, and I wanted to make sure I kept my hair in that happy state it seems to be in. After 10 years of hair loss, when you find something that helps, you pretty much jump all over it… or at least I do.

So round two begins….ding ding.

I arrived at the hotel the day before my appointment, ready, excited and pumped with anticipation to have this treatment done again. I had a lot less apprehension because I pretty much knew what to except. As some of you will recall, a big point of anxiety for me during the last trip, was exactly how much pain was involved in this process. Well thankfully that anxiety didn’t exist because I had already experienced the process and knew it was not that big a deal.

I slept like a baby, no nerves whatsoever, part of that may be attributed to the wine I drank that evening. Gotta love wine! I awoke the following morning and stepped outside on the balcony with my cup of coffee and was just in awe of how beautiful it was. It was an incredibly gorgeous day so I just soaked it all in.

An hour before I was to depart, I dialed the front desk to ask for a cab to pick me up. Before I knew it I was being whisked away by some crazy driver who seriously needs to re-evaluate her profession. I’ve never in my life had a cab ride quite like that before. I found myself bracing at every turn and frantically clutching on to the seat for dear life. And to make matters worse, she didn’t take credit cards! Every cab pretty much takes credit cards nowadays, but her machine was getting serviced (uh huh). So now I had to rummage through my purse (something resembling a black hole) to pull out dollars and quarters. Shockingly I had the cash. Yay for spare change!

I walk into the office and am warmly greeted by the receptionist. I re-sign some forms and take my place in the waiting room chair. Not much waiting time before Dr. Greco appears and welcomes me back. I say my hellos to Val, his awesome assistant, and shortly after I’m in the chair getting my blood drawn. Like I mentioned in my first post, Val is a pro at drawing blood and there was no real discomfort there at all.

The doctor and Val then disappear into the other room to prepare the injection of platelet rich plasma. That process involves spinning it in a centrifuge and also using his protein matrix to get the most yumminess (isn’t that the technical term?) out of my blood. I venture to say that process takes about 15 minutes, I’m not really sure, I was watching Law and Order on the television, while reclined in my dentist like chair.

I was really quite relaxed and had surprisingly had no apprehension about what was about to take place. I didn’t get very far in my Law and Order episode before Dr. Greco and his assistant returned with the platelet rich plasma.

The process was the same as the last time. Dr. Greco started with examining my hair, pushing it in all different directions, at which point he says,  “You had a lot of miniaturized hair before, and it doesn’t seem that you have as much miniaturized hair.” To which I replied, “Oh, you say that to all the girls.:) ha!  His words truly were really echoing what I already felt about my current state of hair loss improvement, so that was great. The process started off with injections to numb my head, then Dr. Greco used a microneedle roller on the scalp, and then comes time for the yumminess – the PRP injections. Pop pop pop (what the injections sound like in my head) and the hardest part is over. Lastly, the doctor and Val massage the PRP in, and clean up my scalp a tad. When they finished and shut the overhead light off, I said “Is that all?” I was really surprised it had gone by so fast and it just seemed so much easier than the last time.

During my last treatment I had some discomfort post treatment when the numbing medication wore off, so this time I decided to take Tylenol before, immediately after and another 4 hours later after that. I think that was the super special recipe for myself, because I didn’t really experience any post treatment pain or discomfort, and I didn’t even have head swelling.  Of course me being ME, I start to think, “well something has to be off, will it work the same?” It couldn’t possibly be the wonder magic of Tylenol, could it? I emailed the doctor with my concern regarding lack of pain (I know that’s funny) and he wrote back letting me know that it will indeed work as well as the last time. From time to time, my mind still reflects on that, as though I HAVE to have pain to see results. I know, I know that’s just plain nutty, welcome to my world :)

So I return back to the hotel, kicked off my shoes and ordered up a little self prescribed aftercare… a bottle of Robert Mondavi chardonnay. That evening I actually felt good enough to go out to eat for dinner (with my hat on of course), so my fiance and I ventured out for some good eating. The next morning I showered and lightly shampooed my scalp, rinsing it clean and then it was off to the airport.

That was pretty much my visit in a nutshell.  I have received so many questions and emails about this new treatment and I think many women (and likely men) remain skeptical about whether or not PRP actually works. I can completely understand that, I am probably more skeptical than anyone when it comes to hair loss treatments. The internet is filled with so much bogus garbage for products and services, that when something real comes along it is hard to believe it will actually work.  I honestly do not know if everyone will respond to this treatment in the same manner as I have, I can only attest to what it has done for me – which is to really help lessen my shedding, spur a little regrowth and make the overall quality of my hair a lot better. My hair now has visibly more fullness and the color seems more vibrant as well, enough so that even my hair dresser acknowledged it without any prompting. Which is a pretty amazing thing.

Realistic expectations… I really can’t stress this enough. If you are going into having this treatment with the notion that this will cure your hair loss, and that all your hair will return back to it’s normal state, then you will very likely be disappointed. This isn’t a cure, but it’s been my little miracle. I’ve reached a point in my hair loss life, that I don’t need everything back. I simply want enough to get by, and really just to keep what I have left, which is a mere fraction of what I started with.  I’ve already been there and done that, with the wanting and praying for everything to return, that time has thankfully passed for me many years ago.  When this nightmare first began I really felt like I didn’t know how I would live my life if ALL my hair didn’t come back. I was riddled with constant sadness, crying and depression. But, amazingly we adapt, we learn to live with less and we gain a greater acceptance of how we are today.  My hair is still shedding, and I still have visible thinness, but so what, if it can stay like this, I’ll be one heck of a happy camper.

One last thing, I want to address a frequently asked question, which is “Why did you go all the way to Florida to have this done with Dr. Greco?”  I realize many places are popping up like Starbucks offering PRP treatments in their practice, but since Dr. Greco was the pioneer in using this therapy for treating hair loss, and since he is currently the only one using his self-engineered protein matrix, I feel most comfortable there. I got results there and so that is where I’ll go for this treatment. I have heard several reports from some women that there was a doctor in Canada who was performing this treatment, and has since stopped offering it, due to what he says is “lack of results.” Well, I’m not sure what he was doing and if he was doing it correctly. I can only go by my own experience, which was quite a positive one.

I  have to say many thanks to Dr. Joesph Greco and staff, they always make me feel very welcomed, comfortable and put my mind at ease. But don’t think I’m not still wondering if the lack of pain during this last treatment will be indicative of lack of results! ha. What’s the saying? “No pain, no gain.” :)  I have already confessed to everyone I suffer with a bit of OCPD right? Yes, it’s OCPD, not OCD, it wasn’t a typo.

For your viewing pleasure, I made a short video of my second PRP treatment:

Links to my previously posted PRP articles:

PRP Therapy Treatment Revisited – My 3 Month Update
My PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) Therapy Experience
Is PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) Therapy a Viable Treatment For Women’s Hair Loss?

Additional PRP Therapy Resources:

Dr. Joseph Greco’s Blog
Dr. Joesph Greco Answers Your Questions on BaldTruthTalk.Com
PRP Therapy Video Presentations

{ 82 comments… read them below or add one }

Vicki March 22, 2010 at 2:50 pm

I’m impressed with how comfortable you are and how great it looks. I wish you continued success. XXX

Brett March 22, 2010 at 8:51 pm

Hi, Thanks so much for posting, especially the video, so nice to be able to see how the procedure actually works.

I have been considering this treatment for a long time now. My hairloss has recently gotten worse, shedding like crazy again with a very noticable increase in thinness…well at least to me, my family anf friends say..it’s fine!.

Anyways, the cost of the procedure and the expense of getting there (I’m in Canada) is an issue. I recently told my dad about it and he was very unsupportive. I tried to explain it to him, but he just said if this was so great it would be everywhere and there would be publishings etc. I tried to explain to him that its kinda new, and there are studies, but now I have this new worry, did I get sucked into yet another scam because i’m so desperate for something to help?

I’ve been in contact with Dr. Greco, and read all the info and blogs. I’m worried about how my scalp would react, as I have horrible scalp pain. I’m also scarred of the possibility of shock loss. I was wondering if you had any before or after photos? I know u said it didn’t give regrowth, but noticable thickening? increase in density? I would never expect to get everything back, but if It could stop shedding and maybe look like it did 8 months ago that would be great!.

Sorry for being so long…..just so damn confused!!!

Erin March 22, 2010 at 8:55 pm

wow. that’s crazy. your hair really does look quite good, though! for real! i have a question for you: is this treatment still in an experimental stage? (like are you in a trial group)? or is this available to the public at large? thanks and i wish you the best of luck!!!

admin March 23, 2010 at 6:48 am

@Vicki – Thank you so much for your support!

@Brett – I don’t have any before and after photos, I declined taking them. Ever since a dermatologist took a picture of my head 10 years ago, and I was mortified and deeply saddened, I opted to never take those kind of pics again. Just a personal decision. I feel they won’t do me any good and I really have nothing to prove to anyone else so I don’t do it. The changes I see are real to my eyes and those around me and a don’t need a picture to tell me that.

I understand your dad’s skepticism, I think my parents would be the same way. I can say I definitely don’t think prp therapy is a scam in any way. PRP has been around for quite a while and there is a lot of science behind it, it’s the application in hair loss that is pretty new.

Nothing is ever a one size fits all, I’m sure there are people that may not respond as well and some that may respond better. That’s just the way these things go. This was the first thing that came along in a long time that I was willing to try because the risk/downside was so small. Like you, I was also concerned that this treatment (like most treatments for hair loss) could possibly cause shock loss, that was my # 1 concern. Dr. Greco had informed me that thus far he hasn’t seen that happen, but really that doesn’t mean it couldn’t, just that the chances of it are really really really small. I didn’t experience that at all, and I did experience the dread shed when going on other hair loss treatments in the past. So the only downside I could see if this didn’t work was that I would be out time/money. For me that was pretty darn good, considering the cons of most things out there. It was something I definitely felt couldn’t hurt and was worth a shot. Like any treatment choice, this is a very personal decision and one we have to weigh out in our own mind. Is this for you? Only you can decide that.

As far as my results… I’ve seen a lessening of my shedding (though I do still shed), and I do have a little regrowth that has helped to thicken my hair line and part up a noticeable degree. My hair just looks better in general, and it has just made me more confident with it. Yes if you go to a bright light bathroom I can still see through my hair line, but I’m resolved to those things now and have learned to style my hair accordingly. Maybe it will improve even more, but I’m please if things just continue as they are. I’m realistic about the whole thing.

@Erin – This is available to anyone who wants to get it done, it’s not a trial group. As to whether the treatment is considered to be still in the experimental stage, I think the answer would depend on which doctor you ask. :)

xoxo

KVC March 23, 2010 at 7:57 am

Hi! Before I continue I want to say that your hair looks pretty amazing right now. I know we’ve all grown used to people telling us it’s “hardly noticeable…it’s not that bad”, but honestly, you could most definitely pass for a normal head of hair at this point! So congratulations to you.

I’m off to get my PRP done this Friday in Belgium. After extensive research about PRP in Europe I have finally found a place that uses the same PRP “kits” and procedure as Dr.Greco (minus the protein matrix that Dr.Greco has self-engineered). I plan to make a visit to him to get the “good stuff” (i.e. the matrix magic) when time is more lenient. If anyone has any questions about PRP in Europe – bombard me!

Admin I have only one question before I get this done: I noticed in the video you posted that the PRP injections were very localized on your crown area – obviously because the video is cropped. I am certainly thinning there as well but I have had a 6 month long dread shed that for the first time has attacked the sides of my head. At my PRP consult (which wasn’t with a Doctor sadly, but with a man who owned the clinic and had sufficient experience with hair loss), he said that I would need to decide a pretty small width (say the width of a hand) of area that I wanted to the PRP to be injected. And he hadn’t heard of any “backward platelt migration” that you discussed in an earlier post.

I am going to get this procedure done by nurses at what is an all-round esthetic clinic. But I have done my research and know that they use high-quality kits (versus the standard and cheaper Regen Lab ones that a lot places are offering). But because no doctor will be present during my treatment, I feel like I need to be the one directing them in terms of where I want the injections. Any tips on this before Friday would be handy!

Thank you so much!

admin March 23, 2010 at 8:15 am

Hi KVC –

Yes, while my hair loss is diffuse all over, the injections were indeed only to the top of head, and this is because the doctor says there IS platelet migration downward. The consultant you spoke with may not have heard of any platelet migration downward, but it doesn’t mean that isn’t the case. In my opinion, it simply means they either don’t believe in it, or don’t have sufficient experience with it.

Lets assume there wasn’t any migration downward, I’d still think the most important part of the scalp to have the injections done would be the top crown portion of the head because that hair lays over everything else (including hairline and partline) and would be the priority area. If you are the one directing them, then I would say that would be the best route to go, instructing them to do the top portion. A part of me is concerned though that they don’t know enough of what they are doing to be able to know where to inject the PRP. (??)

As far as tips for your upcoming PRP treatment, I’d say definitely take Tylenol before, immediately after and shortly after that to keep a steady flow in your system. I really think that helped me this second time around.

Are you going by yourself this Friday, or is someone going with you? Even, if only for your own reference I definitely think it’s neat to record a video or take pictures so you can see later what was being done to you :)

I wish you the best of luck this Friday and please keep us updated with your experience and progress.

xoxo

Bidi March 23, 2010 at 11:50 am

Hey KVC !

I do have questions about PRP in Europe ! I can’t believe I found someone who has found a clinic in Belgium that provides PRP treatment ! I must be lucky in this terrible misery …

I live in Brussels and I’m french speaking (but I do understand Dutch pretty well, although I can’t really speak it). Where are you getting your treatment ? Please give me some information about it !

You can e-mail me : bidibb – at – hotmail . com

Looking forward to read from you ! I feel like this could be real good news for me !

Thanks !

Bidi

PS : Admin, your hair looks really healthy. That’s very conforting. Thanks !

Jennifer March 23, 2010 at 12:11 pm

Wow…it looks like you actually have quite a bit of hair! I was always under the impression that it was super thin…sure does not look thin at all from the video…it’s funny how each of us percieve thinness to be. Good luck with the treatment, sounds like it is working for you!

admin March 23, 2010 at 12:32 pm

Hi Jennifer –

Luckily I have enough hair right now, but don’t be mistaken, it is indeed still quite thin in comparison to where it was before this mess started 10 years ago. Because I started with a crazy thick head of hair it has definitely afforded me the ability to continue to look like a person with a good deal of hair, even amidst losing it for over a decade.

I know your comment is meant in the best of intentions, but it (unintentionally on your part) undermines my feelings and hair loss situation. I know my hair better than anyone else, and I have about 25% of the amount I began with. Shocking, but true. I often don’t share photos (or video) on the site because I know other women will say “Gee your hair looks full” or “your hair looks fine” or “your hair is so much fuller than mine” and on and on. It’s hurtful, at least to me. Angela actually wrote a blog post about that, because it is issue that causes a lot of distress to many women:
http://community.womenshairlossproject.com/Angela/blog/2421/

In addition, photos and video can at times make hair look fuller than it actually is and is not always representative of real life. Having said all that, I do know you from the network, and know you didn’t mean anything bad by what you said, I just had to tell you about my feelings and and put that out there for anyone else reading this or considering saying that my hair looks fine. I hope you take this in the spirit in which it was intended, but I had to address it because it is bothering me to the point I feel like removing all the photos and video I uploaded onto this post.

xoxo

KVC March 23, 2010 at 2:22 pm

Admin, I too am guilty of saying your hair looks pretty great! I know exactly how you mean. My worries have been undermined by so many friends, family and doctors. But I know I am not exaggerating my condition and am not some sort of vain hair-hypochondriac. So anyway, I’m sorry!

With respect to the PRP here in Belgium, you are right – it is a bit fishy that I was asked to go home and “pick a region I wanted treated” after my consult. It is at a place called Prohairclinic and it does hair restoration surgeries primarily – but the really commercial kind that make you doubt their intentions (ads on TV etc.). I have actually had hair restoration done already (at the age of 19, when my condition had stabilized and I wanted back my lost hair), and made sure to choose a doctor reputed for his skills. This place on the other hand, is known by the name of its clinic and not its doctors, who are newbies on the scene.

That being said, it is PRP and not a hair transplant, and a relatively unskilled procedure (in the grander scale of the medical things). From what I have learned after speaking to various doctors including Dr. Greco, the most important thing to find out is the type of kit being used to separate the platelet-rich plasma from the rest of the blood. Dr. Greco uses a brand called “Harvest Lab”, which ensures more effective platelet concentrations versus some other brands (he explained the science of it all in email to me if any of you are interested).

Anyways, after much researching and close-calls (I almost got duped into paying 1500eur or $2000 to get it done in Rome), I settled on Prohairclinic because they use Harvest Lab. Their only shortcoming is that nurses, versus doctors, perform the treatment. Which is why I asked you where I should tell them to concentrate the injections. Of course they should be knowing this already, but I know the clinic have just imported PRP techniques from the States and are still experimenting with it. (Dodgy, I know! But no harm done with PRP, or so I hear.)

Admin I wanted to ask you – I have been suffering from a lot of scalp pain with this recent bout of hair loss. It is localized in areas where the hair is the thinning rapidly and I have read your posts on trichodynia and scalp pain. It constantly feels like my hair is being pulled tightly, and only digging my fingers into my scalp seems to alleviate it. Do you still have this? Has the PRP helped with it at all?

Also, when you say that the PRP should be applied on the “top of the scalp” – were no injections applied to the sides of your head? From having pretty decent hair on my sides, I have lost about 50% of my hair in this region over the past few months. I am hoping to revive it with PRP… but should injections be applied on the sides directly, or is there such a thing as sideward migration of platelets as well?

Thank you!

(Bidi, I am emailing you now!)

Angela March 23, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Hi my girl!

First let me say that was an AWESOME video! Thank you for having the courage to show it. I’m so happy you are pleased with your results and I hope that many woman are inspired by your courage to move forward…I know you inspire me all the time!

xoxo

admin March 23, 2010 at 3:32 pm

@KVC –

Thank you for acknowledging my feelings and being so understanding. Sometimes even the best intentioned comments can be hurtful, and I know we’ve all been there at one point or another, (especially when trying to communicate our hair loss to physicians or talking with family and friends) so thank you again for your response to that. We know ourselves best, no one else can possibly know how far our hair loss has progressed because they don’t know how much hair we had before. You also can’t tell what a person is going through or is experiencing from a photo or video, and at times you can be made to feel like you have to justify the amount of hair loss you have really experienced and what you have gone through. And no one should have to do that. Hair loss is hard enough as it is. I think every picture I’ve ever taken probably taken for the last 10 years probably looks like I had “normal” hair, all the while it was progressively getting thinner and thinner. The fact the picture looked normal didn’t lessen my pain or suffering or the reality that my hair was making a fast exit off my head. :)

Moving on…

In regards to the PRP being a relatively unskilled procedure, you are right, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not brain or heart surgery and I think if properly trained, a nurse is perfectly capable of performing it correctly.

To my understanding ProHairClinic is run by businessmen, and not physicians. They basically hire physicians to do different procedures. I could be wrong, but I think that is the way it works. I haven’t heard anything about the work of their doctors good or bad.

I must say it does sound like you have done some serious homework in regards to selecting a clinic that is uses the same technology (minus protein matrix) that Dr. Greco has. I don’t really think anyone can get messed up by doing the therapy even if not done exactly the same, I just wonder if the results will be the same as having been done by a person who has been performing it with success for awhile.

About the trichodynia, I haven’t had the issue for awhile (thank god) even before I had the PRP done, so I’m not sure if the PRP has helped with keeping it at bay. But I’m sorry you are suffering with that, I know how painful it is, it would hurt so much at times that I couldn’t even lay my head on a soft pillow.

I believe there were PRP injections done at the temples of my scalp but not really the sides. And when Dr. Greco says there is downward platelet migration, I believe he means all over the head, so that would be the back and sides.

If that is of concern to you, ask them to do some toward the top and also sides, if you feel most comfortable with that. I think the most important thing is that you feel good coming out of there with what was done. A positive attitude towards the treatment and the outcome, goes along way. :)

xoxo

@Angela –
I’m glad you like the video! :) was the dancing baby the highlight? LOL The randomness made me laugh. Thanks for your support! xoxo

Bidi March 24, 2010 at 10:07 am

Admin : sorry if you took my comment badly. Surely it was not my purpose. At all. It was just to underline the effect of the treatment after your first shot of PRP, three months earlier. This is what I meant about : “it is conforting”. I was relieved to see that it really worked ! That means there is – at last – something that seems to work to restore a good health to our hair. No offence. Sorry for any harm done. Thank you for sharing !

KVC : thank you for every details you send me : this is very helpfull. I am now in the process of finding those 500 euros to get the treatment done. Thanks a bunch for sharing your research !

Bidi March 24, 2010 at 10:25 am

PS : oh and please : do not remove the video ! I know I have no right to ask this but it makes me feel good every time I watch it …

admin March 24, 2010 at 10:34 am

Hi Bidi – Thank you for your words, your comment really wasn’t bad, and I knew what you meant. It wasn’t the comment that threw my emotions over the edge, but I suppose cumulatively yesterday it was just really affecting me and I felt I had to express my emotions before I continued to receive comments that actually where unintentionally, hurtful, especially after I took a big leap forward to “share” more of myself to help other women considering this treatment. I actually felt it was a risk to share the video, because I’ve seen the way women can be towards each other, ( again unintentionally) towards myself. I’ve uploaded videos and photos in the network before, only to take them down. Sometimes these “compliments” really strike to the core of our hair loss emotions.

There have been so many times over the years that women have confessed to me that they don’t show their picture in the network because it looks like they still have a lot of hair and they don’t want to be judged or made to feel like they don’t belong here. Or they uploaded a picture only to be told “It’s not that bad,” or “you shouldn’t worry about it,” or “that’s not nearly as bad as my hair” and then end up taking it down. Whether a woman has one day of hair loss or is on 10+ years like myself or more, I always write to them the same. The pain is the same and if they say their hair is a certain way, I would never in a million years contradict their words, for I would be denying their feelings. And there is far too much of that that goes on in our lives. This is a place for healing and understanding. We our are own best judge of how our hair is, yes we can be over critical of ourselves, but really we know when more than half our hair is gone and you want to scream when someone denies you of your truth and reality.

Anyways, there I went ranting away… sorry about that. It is not my intention to throw this discussion off track. But, again, it really made me sad yesterday so I’m just getting it off my chest.

And I do want to take this moment to again point a very important blog post written by Angela: http://community.womenshairlossproject.com/Angela/blog/2421/ she explains in way more detail what I am basically explaining here and why I was so affected.

I do thank you for acknowledging what I had written and for your understanding. It means a lot.

I’m really glad you found comfort in the video, that makes me really happy to hear that.

xoxo

Bidi March 24, 2010 at 12:33 pm

I completly understand what you’re saying and I read Angela’s blog entry at a very diffcult time for me. It totaly made sense.

Thank you all, for this space of sharing and understanding. Hair loss is heartbreaking. Period.

I read a comment by a doctor on a french-speaking site about this “denial”. The doctor was just saying : “when a woman tells you she has hair loss, you can believe her : she knows better. There is no fantasizing on this matter.”

We just need to have our voice heard and our pain welcomed. And here we can. Thank you !

mimz March 24, 2010 at 7:25 pm

hi y,

i am so excited about this procedure. really thinking about getting it!

you said that your front hair line filled in, that is where my problem area is. do you see hairs growing back in? i mean that would be amazing if i could get that area looking better.

also, i have always wondered how dr. greco got into this field. he got a degree in health sciences…how did he start doing research into hair loss? do you know anything about this?

thanks

admin March 25, 2010 at 1:07 pm

@Bidi – Whichever doc said that on the french site you referenced, clearly had a good grasp of understanding women’s hair loss. Thanks for sharing that and for being so supportive of the feelings I was trying to convey.

@mimz – Yes, I definitely feel that my hairline and partline has filled in a bit. It isn’t “as” see-through as it was before, and my fiancé comments on it frequently when I pull my hair back. I have little hair sprouts all over as well, so there is definitely a little surge of regrowth and/ or a reversal of miniaturization… something keeping the hairs from just plopping out of my head as they normally would. Whatever it is, it as been really good for me. The longer they can stay put, the fuller my hair will be, so the reduction in shedding was the main thing for me. As far, as your question regarding how Dr. Greco got into this field, to be honest I don’t actually know and just never thought to ask :)

XOXO

admin March 26, 2010 at 4:53 pm

@KVC – I was thinking about you today. How did your PRP treatment go?

xoxo

KVC March 27, 2010 at 6:01 am

Hey Admin!
So I walked in there, probably more excited than a 2 year old in a toy shop. The whole thing took about 30 minutes, cannot say it was 100% pain free but apparently I have an impressive pain threshold. Men who have had the treatment at this clinic have squealed a lot in the past.

I think the numbing of the scalp was the only noteworthily uncomfortable part. The two nurses were only able to get 50mL of blood from me (instead of the standard 60), and I was a bit annoyed that they didn’t persist. (I would have readily given blood from any part of my body if it would’ve helped!) Once they separated the blood from the plasma, she asked me where I would like to have it done. I told them that my sides were especially thinning like never before, and she agreed, picked out a spot and was like, “Okay, so I’m just going to shoot it all in this region. We probably won’t get both sides of your scalp done because there won’t be enough PRP.”

Lucky for me, and THANKS to your video and the subsequent clarification of the importance of the crown area – I butted in and explained how platelets probably migrate and it is best to choose a more focal point on the scalp. So they agreed and that’s where they focussed it – nothing around the part line or close the front of my scalp – which I was a bit upset about but you can’t have everything can you? Hopefully these platelets will migrate like it’s World War III.
I didn’t have any “popping” sensations weirdly enough, only towards the end. I genuinely think I was so numbed that I couldn’t even tell what they were doing half the time.

I felt totally fine after, and have had NO trichodynia today (!!) and just running my hands through my hair, no more than hairs have been shed over the past 24 hours (usually I can expect a good 10 to say farewell). I know I’m jumping the gun here but you know how easily hair excitement comes (and goes) in this tumultuous battle. Will keep you guys updated on the progress. I have some before pictures that I made sure to take with wet hair (so there was absolutely no way people could say “wow it’s not bad at all”, cause it undoubtedly IS). Will be happy to share some after pictures if I see any change.

I have my finals at University very soon and cannot go see Dr.Greco any time soon, but definitely my next treatment will be with him. I really don’t feel like playing Director again, I felt so unsure of what I was telling them to do.

I was wondering though, if this kind of works over the next few weeks and I see at the least, that my shedding dramatically stops, can I not do another treatment which focusses on the front areas of the scalp, and other areas that were absolutely untouched by the treatment? I also don’t understand why more blood cannot be taken to obtain more PRP? Why must we be so stingy with our platelet distribution? :(

OK Admin thank you for all your help!

KVC March 27, 2010 at 6:04 am

Sorry, I meant a good 10 hairs to say farewell every hour!*
10 a day would mean that I was being a tad overdramatic about my condition.

admin March 29, 2010 at 1:48 pm

@KVC

Thanks for sharing your PRP experience!

I heard that also while in the chair, that it definitely seems that women have a higher pain tolerance than men, must be because we’re built to deliver babies :)

I’m glad you spoke up and informed them of where you thought the PRP should be injected as opposed to having had them just shoot it in one spot on your head. The popping sound is just what it seemed like in my head, I suppose that is really different for everyone.

I’m so glad you had no trichodynia the following day, that would be wonderful if as an added bonus it actually work to resolve that as well. Is that still going well?

The one thing that seemed absent from your treatment (or just your story) was the Microneedle scalp rolling, did they do that as well?

I am totally with you on not wanting to have to direct your own treatment, but it’s nice you had the option to go somewhere close by and have this done since it really wasn’t feasible at this time for you to travel.

As far as your questions, I am not really sure. I don’t know if it would even be necessary to have another treatment since it’s possible those untouched areas could still respond favorably due to the platelet migration downward. The blood question is actually a really good question, but again I don’t know the answer unfortunately, but I am curious myself. :)

I wish you all the best and hope you get results you are happy with.

XOXO

KVC March 30, 2010 at 11:50 am

Hey Admin,
Yes I neglected to mention the Dermaroller bit. There was one used both before PRP application and briefly afterwards. I’ve even gone and ordered my own after learning about how it increases penetration of everything from minoxidil to face creams.

Trichodynia is back am afraid. But I am more convinced that ever that it is correlated to stress/being upset. I find that it literally goes away on good hair days and comes back with a vengeance when I am stressed over work, or over my hair. Once these exams are over I’m thinking that some sort of zen therapy is my best bet to recovering my hair and a pain-free scalp. I have so many issues right now, from bad genes to a mild case of PCOS, coming off BCP, and unprecedented school-related stress which has dragged on for over a year now, that I can no longer point out what’s causing this and feel like I’m being repeatedly misdiagnosed and put on quite serious medications to combat it. Very frustrating.

Anyways, good luck to you too with continued PRP success. By the way, did you notice a decrease in shedding right after the treatment? And what is the time scale for other tangible differences? I definitely know what you mean when you say the hair looks healthier. It might be entirely in my head but my hair looks like it’s been through 10 conditioning treatments, and with sufficient effort, I can actually make it look like the last 6 months never happened! Was definitely thrilled about this. And I have to say that I couldn’t perform such magic a week ago. I just didn’t have the necessary “bounce” or volume.

Tara March 30, 2010 at 5:04 pm

Admin,
Awesome update!!! I also had PRP therapy performed by Dr. Greco. Watching your video reminded me when I was in his office. So far my experience and results have been good. The shedding has definitly gone down, while it’s only been a month since my treatment I’m already so encouraged to make another appt in 4.5 months. I knew I probably would go sooner than the 6-8 months if I saw progress/results. Since I live in California, the sooner I schedule my flight the better in order find low cost airfare. Thank you so much for doing all the research on PRP and finding Dr. Greco and sharing your results w/us. I can’t tell you how much better and hopeful I feel since having had this treatment done.

Wanda April 1, 2010 at 10:44 am

Hello,

I am so happy for you. I hope and pray this is an answer to my prayer. I’m planning to have the treatment in 6 months. What hotel you would recommend using? I may fly out by myself and I want to be in a safe environment.

Thanks, and I hope your hair continues to grow and remain healthy.

mimz April 2, 2010 at 3:17 pm

Y,

How much time did you take off from work? I am considering doing this, but wanted to know how long ’till the swelling goes down or you could style your hair again?

Chrissy April 4, 2010 at 8:31 pm

Wow, your hair seems to be responding well. I wish I started out with thick hair. I had a lot of baby fine hair that I believe has miniaturized and I lost about 3 handfulls last summer when I got sick (PCOS related but prior to being diagnosed). I’m so depressed and while I’d love to have everything back as it was, at this point I’d love a slight thickening or minimal regrowth if I could get it and I think PRP is a definite option for me. Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention. I’m a realist so I’d have to try and see if it helped at all, but I’m also hopeful that maybe this could be the interim treatment until there maybe is a cure one day. If this could keep the shedding at a tolerable/”normal” level so that I have enough hair by the time medical science figures hair loss out enough to give us better options that work and give us even more dramatic results, sign me up. Thanks again for bringing this up because I truly never heard of it before.

Donna April 5, 2010 at 11:41 pm

What happened to the video. I tried to click on it and nothing happened. Did it get taken down? I would love to see it as well.

Pippa April 7, 2010 at 6:58 am

Dear Admin,
I just want to thank you for all your posts and great visuals, if it wasn’t for the WHLP I would never have found out about PRP so please, please do not remove them as it gives me great hope every time I view your video. I am having my first treatment in Melbourne, Australia on the 13/4. I’m even travelling interstate with a broken leg in a cast, hope I get there, but as it is the only place in the country that carries out the treatment , I just have to go for it and hope that they follow Greco’s procedure. At my age ( it’s a lot further advanced than yours) I can only hope that the dreaded shedding stops and I have enough hair to carry me into to my latter years and I can avoid wigs. Thanks again and I shall keep you posted on my treatment.

admin April 7, 2010 at 10:16 am

Sorry about my delayed response…

@KVC – I am sorry to hear that the Trichodynia is back, it’s an awful unexplainable, painful thing to deal with. I hope it’s gotten better.

I noticed a reduction in shedding fairly quickly (perhaps after a month) but I know it can take longer than that to see any improvement. But, I think emotionally I felt better immediately afterwards, perhaps for having been proactive and the promise of what this new treatment “might” do. I think our attitude and state of mind affects us positively or adversely. Sometimes we can be our own worst enemy.

As far as other tangible differences, like the healthy appearance in my hair, I’d say it just progressively as the weeks past improved until it hit it’s peak of where it is at today, soft, shiny and healthy looking. I have gotten more compliments about my hair in the last couple months since, well.. too many years to count. Just today at the grocery store, the cashier (who by the way has hair to die for, thick thick long black hair) complimented me on my hair and asked me if I cut it (I haven’t). At the nail salon last week (I wore my hair down and blow dried) everyone said how good I look and that I looked younger and like I had lost weight. LOL. I’m not any younger and I definitely haven’t lost any weight :) I think I’m just carrying myself a little more confident, taking more time with my hair and appreciating what it is today — and I’m so thankful.

I’m glad to hear that you are already feeling good about the treatment and how it has made your hair feel and look in such a short time. I wish you continued success! and please keep us posted.

@Tara – I’m so happy your shedding has gone down! Yay! I’m with you on keep the 4 month treatments and going 3 times a year because I’m so thrilled I want to keep this going. I’m in California as well and it’s a bit of a trek, but it’s more than worth it to me. It’s just made such an incredible and positive change in my life, that over the last few months I feel like I’ve been recapturing myself back, and it’s felt great. I’m glad it’s had the positive change in your life as it has in mine.

@Wanda- Email me at women@womenshairlossproject.com and I’ll let you know where I stayed the last 2 times. :)

@mimz – The only time I took off work was the travel time and procedure day – one day there, one for the procedure and the next day flight home. You definitely can be back to work the next day after the procedure and if you work somewhere you can wear a hat, then the same day.

@Chrissy- I agree this could be that great interim treatment to help us keep our hair until day (god I hope that day comes) when there is a cure and answer for women’s hair loss. I wish this was around 10 years ago, it probably would have helped me to keep more of my hair. Better late than never…

@Donna – The video is still up

@Pippa – Good luck on your upcoming treatment in Australia! I think you have good and realistic expectations going into this and I really think that’s very important. I wish you all the best and please keep us posted!

XOXO

LC April 13, 2010 at 6:51 pm

@Pippa – it’s good to see another Aussie in here! I’m Melbourne born and bred. Can you let me know which doctor you saw in Melbourne? I am keen to investigate this as a possibility. The only thing I am worried about is the cost.

CM April 14, 2010 at 12:34 am

Hi Admin,

So so happy for you!

@Pippa- I hope you made it to Melbourne ok yesterday (in your cast poor you!) and that your treatment went well with not too much discomfort. I’m in Melbourne and have been considering having PRP. I would be very interested to hear what your experience of the staff and the procedure was. Hopefully in a few months you’ll be able to post about your fabulous results! I’m crossing my fingers for you :)

@LC- and now there are three of us! :)

Cj April 21, 2010 at 6:30 am

I’ve just started looking into PRP for my hair loss and had a few questions if you don’t mind. I’m in my early thirties and am desperately searching for something that will help me! It seems PRP doesn’t help you grow much hair just thicken what you have, is that correct? How often do you need to have the procedure? A brother in the medical field warned me of possible problems down the road due to the stem cells not “turning off” so to speak possibly leading to skin cancer. Have you run into any similar concerns in your research? Thank you so much!

Wantresources April 26, 2010 at 3:43 pm

Hi All,
Congrats on the outcome and the wellbeing that has resulted from the PRP. Sometimes I think the helplessness we all feel is one of the worst parts!

I just made an appt with Greco and will update you. I am wondering however if anyone has talked to or asked Greco about the hair cloning procedures that are coming out (Oprah’s blog had info on it too). Just wondering his take and how or why he feels this might be better than cloning. Don’t get me wrong, I am trying it but just wanting to keep informed!

Kay May 5, 2010 at 6:27 am

Thanks so much for sharing! I have my first PRP appt. with Dr. Greco on the 18th and I can’t wait! Reading your experience has helped ease a lot of my anxiety over the procedure and helped me reach the decision to just go for it! After all, it couldn’t hurt….

Wanda May 10, 2010 at 7:42 pm

Hi Kay,

Good luck, and keep us posted. I am looking to go myself and have it done.

Suzy May 20, 2010 at 10:41 am

Hi,

I am a 24 year old who has been dealing with thinning hair for the past 9 years or so (at least that’s when I began noticing it), but don’t have very much shedding. I was wondering if PRP is good for those who don’t necessarily have a problem with shedding as much as just overall thinning. I also read on a blog that the procedure works best for the crown area, but for some reason isn’t as good at increasing the thickness in the hairline area (which is where I have more thinning) or restoring the hairline. I saw that you wrote about hairs sprouting up at your hairline, so I was just curious if what I read on the other blog was valid at all. Also, I was wondering how the pricing works for this procedure. Thanks :)

Suzy

Renee May 24, 2010 at 3:51 pm

Please continue with the update! Thank you so much :)

Rach June 1, 2010 at 12:50 pm

Dear Admin,
Thanks so much for posting this! It has actually given me the courage to talk to my husband about this and now we’re figuring out a way to pay for it. I have two questions. Are you still taking any medications for your hairloss? I know at one time you mentioned spiro and orthotricyclen. I didn’t know if you were still taking either of those? I am on bcp and really need to stay on them and was hoping it’s ok to keep taking them while you do the PRP. Also, does Dr. Greco allow people to finance their procedures perhaps? If so, that might be an option for me. Just wishful thinking probably :)

JDH June 21, 2010 at 3:57 pm

Dear Admin
I was wondering how your 2nd treatment went with Dr. Greco? I had my first one (based on your experience) but it’s only been about 3 weeks. I was interested in hearing how you felt things were now that you’ve had 2 sessions. Are you still happy with the way your hair looks/feels? What made you decide to do every 4 months? Thanks

dcb June 23, 2010 at 6:42 pm

Dear Admin,
I am also interested in your answer to Rach’s question on whether or not you are still taking any medications for your hairloss or if PRP therapy is your only regime at this time.
Thanks

Kelley June 28, 2010 at 11:04 am

I would like to know how your second round has turned out. Are you still happy with the results? Please let us know…

admin June 28, 2010 at 11:52 am

Hi Everyone – Sorry for not writing sooner, I’ve been so busy lately and the days just seem to zoom on by.

So I’ll attempt to answer all your questions now :)

@CJ – What I have seen in myself, is that it really has helped to make me feel my hair is thicker, with richer color, and it also reduced the amount of shedding I was having. I have seen lots of baby hairs as well, so perhaps that is indicative of regrowth, but it isn’t so overwhelming that it has restored my lost locks. I still do lose hair daily and actually right now I’m in a bit of a slightly higher shedding period. As far as how often you are suppose to go, I think perhaps you could get away with twice a year, however I am opting to go every 4 months because I am afraid to wait until my hair takes a downward turn before getting all the goodness back. I am not sure about what your brother mentioned regarding the stem cells, I have no knowledge of that whatsoever.

@WantResources – How did your appointment go? Did you have it yet?

@ Kay – also wondering how your treatment went ?

@ Suzy – I think some of your questions might be better suited for Dr. Greco himself, as I’m not really qualified to answer them, but I can say that yes I did have baby hairs sprouting in the hairline and partline, but I still do also look “thin” there, so it didn’t restore it, but I’m pleased just to keep what I have, anything extra is a bonus. Definitely send Dr. Greco an email, I’m sure he’ll get back to you quickly.

@Renee – Updates, Updates, I’ve been on a bit of a posting hiatus because of work and other things, but I very pleased with my last treatment as well, I am noticing slightly more shedding right now, I’d say it was in the last few weeks, but it is still less than before I had the first treatment done. I will be going back in July for another treatment, which will make that one my third.. and I’m anxious for my appointment to come asap. I do truly believe in this treatment, I’ve seen what it has done for myself. But it’s important for women to know this is NOT a miracle cure or anything, it is something that CAN help. It has definitely helped me. I think one of the reasons I was so pleased with everything was because I had modest and realistic hopes and expectations as to what I wanted this treatment to do. I just wanted the lightening speed at which I was losing my hair to stop. It has reduced the shedding and that has been my own little miracle. I am able to cope and deal better with my hair loss and everything else in life if I’m not being constantly reminded that I’m balding. So this has been life changing for me.

@Rach – I am glad you have found the courage to talk to your husband about this, we so desperately need that support from our partner, friends or family, it’s hard to go it alone. I am still taking my medications for my hair loss, 200mg of Aldacone and also Ortho TriCyclen. I am not a doctor, but I don’t think there would logically be any problem for you to continue with the pill and have this treatment. But when in doubt, ask your doctor. As far as the financing of the treatment, I don’t know, that is a question to ask the office. They are really very nice there, so definitely give them a call.

@JDH – please see my comment to Renee about my update. How did you treatment go? Yes, I am still happy with the way my hair looks and feels and I will be back in the chair next month. I’m racking up the frequent flyer miles :) As I mentioned to CJ above, I wanted to go every 4 months because I’m scared to wait any longer, I am pleased with what this has done for not just my hair, but my life… I’ll post more about that in an actual post. But long story short, having this relief in my shedding and the improved quality of hair and color, has helped me to be more of who I was before all this begin. It’s helped me to recapture me. I am still losing hair, I am still a woman with female pattern hair loss, but this has been a gift, to be given more time with my hair by having less shedding, it stays in my head longer, which logically would make it a tiny bit thicker. I’m good with that. After 10+ years of this never ending hair loss struggle, I definitely cherish the gift to have the results I’ve had, however modest they may be. I’m actually going to be getting a hair cut next week sometime. I find shorter hair just works better for me, helps it to look fuller. I used to be afraid for my hair dresser to come over, I’d cry over it, now I’m looking forward to trimming the ends. Times a changing.

@dcb- Yes, Ortho Tricyclen and 200mg of Aldcatone.

@Kelley – I think I answered your question in my response to Renee and JDH, but it’s a YES, yes I’m happy. Happy enough to get back on a plane AGAIN next month.

My apologies to the ladies for my delayed responses, these past couple months have been quite busy for me. If I didn’t answer something, or if you have a question please feel free to ask. I do think it’s important for everyone to know that this isn’t a cure, I don’t want women going into this with that in mind, spending the money and expecting something that isn’t going to happen. I knew that nothing might comes of this when I went in for it last Nov, and I was just willing to take the chance, there are never really any guarantees in life, and this is no different. Everyone is so different, some may respond, maybe some won’t and maybe some respond better than others. I think you need to be willing to accept those things before hopping on a plane and spending the financial and emotional investment.

I’ll leave you with this twist on the proverb “Nothing ventured, Nothing Gained”

“Nothing ventured, nothing gained — but if everything is ventured, and still nothing gained, give up and venture elsewhere.” – Peter Wastholm

Ha, that makes me laugh.

Rach June 29, 2010 at 5:04 am

Admin,
Thanks so much for your response! I had already scheduled my appointment for mid July and am really hopeful. I do realize that it’s different for everyone, but if it just restores the shine and luster to my hair, I will be so happy. My husband is really supportive and I am so thankful for that. Hopefully we will have the money for me to go 3 times a year, but if not, I know I’ll be able to do it twice a year and maybe that will be enough. We’ll see. I am continuing with the bcp just because I know my body does better on it. It really doesn’t have a huge impact on my hair, so what the heck. Anyway, thanks again for the response. You continue to give me encouragement and I love the proberb you quoted. “nothing ventured, nothing gained” is so true! Thanks and take care!!!

JJ July 12, 2010 at 2:36 pm

I had the PRP procedure in mid-April with the thought that anything was worth trying. I didn’t have any unreasonable expectations as to the results I might experience as I went in to this–just hoped for the best. I initially noticed much more shedding, but it stopped after three weeks. Since then, I honestly have not observed any improvement in my hair character, including color, quality, or density. I am remaining hopeful that I will experience even a small change for the better as time passes. As it stands, however, an objective assessment of my hair shows no measurable improvement after 3 months. I think it is important to keep in mind that PRP is an expensive procedure with an uncertain outcome that may not yield any changes at all. Like I said, I try to remain optimistic about the results– I have not given up hope. I am interested to hear if others who have undergone PRP therapy have experienced any notable changes. I wish so very much that I could say I saw regrowth, but I haven’t.

megan July 12, 2010 at 7:33 pm

JJ,
thank you for that update and i am sorry that you have had to wait so long for results. the shedding seems to suggest something so keep the faith a little longer.

can you fill us in on who did your procedure? and what was your history leading up to now. has your hair loss always been characterized by high shedding? any info would be helpful.

again thank you for posting your experience. best to you.

Renee July 13, 2010 at 4:33 pm

thank you so much for your response :) I am sooo happy for you!

Wanda July 16, 2010 at 9:57 am

JJ, hopefully your good results are coming. Where did you go for treatment? Have the shedding stopped? Anyway, my best to you.

Kay, give us an update on your treatment. How is your hair now, better or about the same? My best to you as well.

Thanks.

Sharry July 19, 2010 at 10:54 am

I was reading above but didn’t see an answer to the question I have, so I thought I’d post it.

I am considering PRP Therapy. However, I have almost no hair loss anymore. Getting my hormones regulated and using Minoxidil and Spiro seems to have stopped the excessive hair loss. However, the hair I have remaining is baby-fine on top and very thin. I use Toppik daily.

So, if I’m NOT still losing hair, is it possible that PRP will help make my hair less fine and perhaps regrow some? Does the treatment itself trigger a shed? Or, does the fact that my hair loss is now stable make me an unsuitable candidate for PRP?

Thanks.

JJ July 19, 2010 at 2:49 pm

Thanks for the well wishes, ladies.

To answer your questions, I flew from SLC to see Dr. Greco for the PRP treatment. The excess shedding stopped in about 3 weeks.

My hair loss history: My hair has been gradually thinning since I was about 19 or 20. (I am 33 now). I have finely-textured hair and I didn’t have a really thick head of hair to begin with, so at this point, my scalp is somewhat visible over the entire top of my head. I currently use Toppik or wear a hairpiece. Because I have 3 sisters with thinning hair like mine, I believe there is a genetic predisposition for hairloss in my family. I don’t take any hair medications (except vitamins) because I would like to have a baby sometime in the near future. I have used Rogaine for women, however, throughout my 20’s up until I had my first (and only) child about 4 years ago. I started using it again last year, though. Overall, I am trying to be proactive in my attempts to slow the thinning of my hair without using medications that are unsafe for pregnancy. This was my primary motivation for having the PRP therapy.

I feel like I spend a lot of time and energy “wishing” that I had more hair. My thoughts are consumed by it. Eventually, I hope to be able to come to terms with my hair loss and gain a better perspective somehow, because it is so emotionally draining. I just don’t know how to get there.

Sharry July 20, 2010 at 6:01 am

WantResources – I did email Dr. Greco from his web site. After doing the online assessment, he responds personally to additional emailed questions. I asked him about cloning and whether it is a viable option. His response was that it hasn’t yet been approved by the FDA and wouldn’t be available as a treatment for probably another 10 years.

Does that conflict with what Oprah’s site said? I didn’t see it.

Tara August 6, 2010 at 4:41 pm

Hi Everyone!
Wanted to let you know I’ve had a totatl of 2 PRP treatments by Dr. Greco. My first treatment was in February and second in mid-July, roughly 5 months apart. So far, I would agree with the ADMIN, in that I have seen improvments (probably more so with this second treatment) in terms of reduction in hair shed, and increased texture & color. I am going to remain positive that things continue along these lines as this is really the only treatment that has given me hope.
I believe my hairloss is definitely a result of a hormonal imbalance, due to peri-menopause. I am currently undergoing HRT treatment where I am hopeful the increased ESTROGEN will help slow down the loss.

Nicole Smith August 12, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Hello,

I would just like to thank the ADMIN for sharing her story. Mine is a similar one, though it hasn’t been going on for long. I stopped taking Yasmin birth control pill in Late October 2008 and in December 2008 my hair started shedding in handfuls. It has pretty much shed constantly from that point to now, though the shedding has been up and down. I have tried absolutely everything to stop the shedding…every blood test imaginable, naturopath, acupuncture, homeopath, hypnotherapy, etc.. etc… and nothing has helped. I had a scalp biopsy done in Feb 2010 and it came back telogen effluvium (23%) but there was evidence of fibrous streamers which pretty much indicates a tendency towards FPB.

Before this all started my hair was my entire identity. For my whole life I have always been identified by my long, thick curly strawberry blonde hair and now I have a pixie cut because I couldn’t stand the shedding. I have lost about 40% of my hair. This whole experience has been the most devastating thing that has ever happened to me.

I read the ADMIN’s blog on her experience with PRP Therapy and I have decided to give it a try. I have an appointment scheduled with Dr. Greco for Sept. 9th. Currently, I am getting laser therapy treatments and taking an herbal DHT Blocker that has Saw Palmetto in it….I have seen some tiny results, but nothing dramatic. I think this blog is amazing and I would like to thank the ADMIN for giving us an opportunity to share our stories and also learn from others. I hope my experience with PRP will be just as successful. I would be interested to hear others’ progress with this therapy as time goes by……

God Bless Everyone.

Wanda August 17, 2010 at 1:55 pm

Hi Nicole,

I, like you, was identified by my hair. I had hair down my back, it was so long and pretty. My hair had that indian type texture and it was simply BEAUTIFUL. Yes, I do miss my hair and I pray alot asking God to heal me. Well, I guess I will have to be patient and just trust him. I use to hate going out, but now I am combing and making pretty what I do have and just go. We have only one life to live, so we better live it well. The hair like everything else will take care of itself.

Good luck to all as we walk this journey.

Good luck to you Nicole, and keep us posted.

Thanks again, Admin.

Kim August 18, 2010 at 3:10 pm

I have been losing hair for the last few months and I am terrified by how thin my hair has become. My hair consumes my daily thoughts yet friends and family just cannot seem to see it. I have no idea why it’s happening or what I can do – this all is all so new for me, I feel so lost! Reading your posts doesn’t make me feel better about my situation but at least I am not alone.

R September 19, 2010 at 4:48 pm

Admin,
How is your hair doing after your 3rd PRP treatment? I hope it’s going great!!!

admin September 25, 2010 at 5:52 am

Hi R – Well… I wish I could report that my shedding has continued to stay at bay, but unfortunately I cannot.

The first treatment was done one way, can’t explain it, other than the syringe was blood red in color with my own blood, and I know FOR SURE that one worked. It was apparent to me and all those around me. The second one, the doctor refined the process further (can’t explain how exactly since I don’t fully understand), and now the syringe with a white/gold opaque color, that was also my blood – but processed different. Sometime between my second and third my hair started to shed, but it still wasn’t shedding too much and it was less than before I had done any of the PRP so I just figured it would pass. I went for the third PRP in July but still my hair continued to shed with no improvement that I could see. In August the shedding increased big time! Now it seemed like it was before I had had any PRP at all, crazy crazy shedding, all my hair was just falling out. It has definitely taken a toll on me emotionally. I think that perhaps the first method (the one I had last nov) of processing my blood is superior for hair, and I’m thinking now that perhaps the second and third one didn’t have much of an effect. The doctor says that many of the women have responded really really well to this new method of doing the PRP, but I think I am in that small percentage of women that might be better the first way. I’m not sure to tell you the truth. I am going back to receive a 4th PRP done the same way as the first time. I hope the results are the same as the first time around. I’m optimistic. I’ll definitely report back to let everyone know.

xoxo

megan September 25, 2010 at 10:32 am

admin.

i am sorry to hear this but i wanted to offer my thoughts since oddly enough it was on my mind regarding PRP.

i think the first prp you received was just your own platelets separated from your blood and injected back into your scalp-hence the red color.

your second and third visit dr. greco had changed the way he preformed PRP, but mixing into the platelets has own proprietary “protein matrix”. this is basically what are called”growth factors” and have been the buzz lately in the hairloss industry.

so my thoughts are: you don’t react well to them. i am not surprised as that is one more experimental factor to throw into the mix. growth factors are complex and have conflicting results via lab research. some of the “growth factors” have been shown to cause cell apoptosis and signal telogen. i have always been leery of them from the research i have done(medical journals).

if i am incorrect and you always had the protein matrix i apologize.

since the matrix is proprietary no other doctor can perform the same method as dr. greco.

hope this is helpful to you.

admin September 25, 2010 at 11:01 am

Hi Megan – Thanks so much for your comment, I appreciate you taking the time to share the information you have gathered regarding growth factors, and offering up a possible explanation as to what happened. It definitely makes me think.

I’m not actually sure if I had the matrix in the beginning or not, I have to ask, but my understanding is regardless of the matrix, growth factors exist in the platelets themselves. Which is what the benefit would be to the hair. I have to find out from the doctor what exactly is the difference between the way I had it done the first time, and the way it was done the second and third time. It seems many women are responding well to the new way, but I didn’t, lucky me.

What went through my mind, was that basically the first time was a success, that I feel confident in, and then the 2nd and 3rd did nothing, so eventually the benefits of my first treatment ran out around the 8months mark, which is consistent with how long the PRP treatment would potentially last. Meaning essentially that my 2nd and 3rd were ineffective. That is what I *think* might have gone on, or perhaps I’m hoping.. since I really do want this to work for me again. We’ll see, 4th times a charm?

*fingers and toes are crossed* :)

Thanks again.

xoxo

Nicole Smith September 30, 2010 at 7:21 am

Hello,

I wanted to update that I just got back from getting PRP Therapy from Dr. Greco. I live in Vancouver, BC, Canada so it was quite the trek to get down there; however, I am glad I went. Like admin’s experience, the staff are super friendly and Dr. Greco was more than informative, attentive, compassionate and accomodating. I am hopeful that this therapy will work for me. I have experienced TE for the past two years after discontinuing the birth control pill (Yasmin). I had a scalp biopsy done in February and it came back as TE; however, I am pretty sure I have AGA, as I have definitely noticed miniaturization. I will keep updating as time goes on and am hopeful that the updates will be positive.

Admin – I am really bummed to hear that the PRP has decreased in its ability to stop the shedding for you. It does make me nervous for myself, but I hope that your 4th treatment will be more successful. One of my questions to Dr. Greco was about how often to get the treatments and I was wondering whether PRP could have a dosage effect like Rogaine, where it works for a period of time and then your body gets used to it and it stops working as well……he didn’t really have an answer for that, but thought that shouldn’t happen, since he is mostly using your own cells….but something to think about….

I definitely am interested in everyone’s experiences with PRP, since many of us have gone down there to get it done….it would be nice to have a forum or something else with everyone that has got it done and what their individuals experiences have been with it so far……

Thanks so much for sharing and will keep updating on my own experience.

Cheers – Nicole

Darby October 8, 2010 at 8:11 pm

Hello –
I had PRP therapy done by Dr. Greco last March (I would never have known about him if it weren’t for the admin’s blog, although I live in southwest Florida). He gave me what he described as the “gold formula”, which as I understand it consists of growth factors only and no platelets. He did say that most people get the platelets. I didn’t pay too much attention to that at the time, but after more than 3 months passed and I saw no decrease in shedding (it actually got worse the first few weeks), I called his office and asked why I didn’t get the platelets. The answer was a bit complicated, but basically the poor condition of my hair was the deciding factor (the nurse compared it to a plant with very little topsoil?). She told me to be patient and that I could still see results.
Shortly after my treatment (May-June), I decided to go to a holistic dentist and have all of my old mercury fillings removed and my metal crowns replaced with porcelain. In early July, a plumbing problem in our home required the replacement of all of our copper pipes with plastic pipes. That same week, the itching in my scalp stopped and my shedding decreased dramatically. Gradually I began to see new growth and now – 3 months later – I am happier and more hopeful than I have been in a long time. I’m not sure if the improvement was a delayed reaction to the PRP, the removal of the metal from my mouth and home, or a combination of all three things. But I am scheduled for another round of PRP therapy next week and I’m hoping for even more improvement. I’m a little bit fearful that the shedding will start up again, but I’m nearing the 7 month mark since my first treatment, so any positive effects would be wearing off soon anyway. I’m not sure if I should request platelets this time or not…

EDP October 10, 2010 at 2:29 am

Hello Megan,

You seem to be very knowledgeable about growth factors. Could you please let me have more info?

Three months ago I had PRP and within two days I started to shed massive quantities of hair. By massive I mean an average of about 600 hairs a day. Now, three months later there is still no end to the shedding, almost every hair I pull on even slightly comes out.

As you can imagine this is terribly traumatic for me, and I am particularly concerned after I read on your post about conflicting results and of growth factors causing telogen.
Do you think this form of telogen will be permanent? I do have some regrowth but it is very slow compared to the way it used to grow back in the past, and what little hair I do still have has become limp and lifeless.

Thanks.

KVC October 22, 2010 at 5:38 pm

Hi everyone,
I’ve been meaning to post for months now. I have learned so much about hair loss over the past year that I feel selfish not imparting the mistakes I’ve made, and the solutions I have found.

My hair began thinning one year into puberty (around the age of 13). It was a slow and gradual process, but definitely noticeable by the time I hit 15. By this point, my middle part was unbearably wide (though the rest of my hair maintained its thickness).

Given my age, doctor’s attributed it to iron deficiency for many years (I have been brought up vegetarian). I eventually met with a dermatologist who told me quite frankly that this was androgenetic alopecia. My father is nearly bald, and all his sisters suffer from pretty advanced stages of hair loss. So it was a plausible diagnosis.

She put me on Diane 35, an anti-androgenic birth control pill only available here in Europe. I stayed on it from the ages of 16-20, and though no hair grew back, things definitely stabilized. At age 19, after believing I had hit the worst of the worst and things would remain stable, I opted for a hair transplant from a reputed surgeon. I had a great donor area, and the plan was to refill my middle part which had thinned over all these years.

Everything went great. I spent the year following the transplant feeling glorious – refuelled with a youthful confidence that had been taken away from me. It wasn’t that I ever stopped believing I was attractive- but there is a difference between believing it, and genuinely feeling it. Hair loss definitely shat on the latter.

At 21, on top of the world hair-wise, I decided to quit the pill. There is a history of breast cancer in my family, and given the stable state of my hair, I thought it was silly to expose myself to gratuitous amounts of oestrogen. I guess you can all guess what happened next. Six months later, I went through what can only be described as chemotherapy-esque hair loss. It was sickening, and I remember feeling crippled, unable to leave home or progress in my life.

I had properly shocked by hormonal system by going off the pill and it was taking revenge. The thinning continued ceaselessly – it was as though an episode of TE turned into rapidly degenerating androgenetic alopecia – everything was being slowly stripped away, the sides of my head/every imaginable part line. It was like I had set off something that may not have happened for many years, purely by getting off the pill.

Lesson #1 (which I’m sure most of you know): if you are hormonally vulnerable, or have expressed some abnormal sensitivity to even normal hormone levels, don’t play with the pill.

After reading Admin’s post back in March, I was determined to get PRP. I received my first treatment in March in Belgium. I noticed a small decrease in shedding and a definite enhancement in the quality of my hair (shine and perceived thickness), but no regrowth. I had my final set of university exams at the time, so wasn’t able to fly out to Dr.Greco till July. I was so extremely hopeful still, thinking his magic blend of growth factors was so uniquely different from what had been offered to me in Belgium that it would, at the least, give me back what I had lost over the past year.

Lesson # 2: don’t have high expectations. The treatment made absolutely no tangible difference bar the initial week of decreased hair loss and increased hair shine. It is nothing but a fancy conditioning treatment, ladies. And investing time, hope and money is simply not worth it. Come September, my hair had hit new lows – even my temples were slowly disappearing.

It was at this point that I heard of mesotherapy for the scalp. Mesotherapy is essentially the medical term for a series of shots that deliver beneficial ingredients (e.g. B12, biotin, other vitamins and minerals, and sometimes DHT blockers) via needles, to the scalp. Esthetic clinics offer it for many body parts – for the scalp to reduce hair loss, for the face to reduce wrinkles, for the bum to reduce cellulite – each solution blend is specifically tailored for that body part.

It is something that has been around for years. But it has little clinical backing and therefore never received much attention. By this point, my optimism had worn away and I was just looking for something to make my hair look full -PRP style – but without the heavy cost. Each session of mesotherapy costs me 65 GBP or $100.

I have had 3 sessions so far and honestly have been pleasantly shocked by the results. My hair looks so much fuller and healthier. I can’t spot overnight regrowth, but it’s as if the existing hair has mobilized itself to make things very easily concealable. I have had friends come up to me telling me my hair looks better than it ever has (they don’t even realize that I’ve lost at least 30% of it over the past year). For the first time in a long time, I feel good about it.

So Lesson # 3: If you are going to opt for PRP, mesotherapy for the scalp delivers the exact same results. No regrowth as such, but a tangible difference in quality of hair and hair loss, so much so that it might even conceal a little of what you have lost. It is offered at many beauty clinics in big cities. It is certainly painful, but the injections only last one minute and a nurse will administer them. They do not use anaesthetic – but trust me, it is fully bearable. Here is more info:
http://medical.preferredconsumer.com/cosmetic_surgery/aesthetic_trends/hair_loss_treatment-mesotherapy.html

The other thing I am using alongside the weekly mesotherapy shots is something called a High Frequency machine. Professional ones are used at beauty clinics to tighten/improve quality of facial skin, and it even functions as an acne-clearing device. Many Ayurvedic hair loss centers (in India) use it to promote scalp blood circulation. I had been to such a clinic and noticed how much it was helping me with the terrible scalp pains that come with intense periods of shedding (trichodynia, as many of you must know). Essentially what it does is generate a current that is transmitted to the skin through a glass electrode which helps to kill harmful bacteria and stimulate circulation. Sounds a little freaky but they have ones on the market for home-use only and are perfectly safe.

Lesson #3: For those of you suffer scalp pains (which doctors trivialize as psychological for lack of a better answer), high frequency therapy gives long term relief and wakes up areas of the scalp that are a bit dead. Here is the link to the one I purchased:
http://www.amazon.com/High-Frequency-Darsonval-Home-Device/dp/B001VII87W

The last thing I have to share with you guys, and probably the news that has fully restored my optimism is the invention of QR 678. Two doctors in Hyderabad, India have discovered the perfect combination of plant-based growth factors and claim to have induced 90% regrowth in several hundred patients over the last 4 years. There is a huge lack of real evidence, but their excuse is that while their patent is pending, they are unable to release much information.

I am scheduled to have my first of this five-course treatment on the 22nd of November. Each treatment costs about $112 which is incredibly reasonable (it’s the air fare that kills). While this may not be the final cure, it is surely an hopeful indication that in the very near future, hair loss will be an eliminated epidemic.
Some more info on QR 678:
a) http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&source=hp&biw=1213&bih=688&q=qr+678&aq=f&aqi=g10&aql=&oq=&gs_rfai=
b) http://debrajshome.wordpress.com/2010/09/20/the-qr-678-growth-factor-story/
(the doctor’s own blog which explains some of the doubts people have had)

I will keep you guys updated on how I go. If you have any questions about the few recommendations I have written about, I have created an email address specifically for this purpose. It is:
kvc.hairloss.help@gmail.com
(I have also had long-term experience with both Minoxidil and the Laser Hair Comb, and know a fair bit about PCOS and hormonal issues in general – so if you have questions about any of those two feel free to shoot them at me. I’m by no means a doctor, just someone who was dealt an unfair hand at an unbearable age, and have tried everything humanly possible to change it.)

Take care girls. Know that your fears are not vain, they are legitimate. If you have ever been told that hair loss is a worry for people who don’t have bigger worries, know that this is untrue. Hair loss, especially before the age of 40, is one of the hardest things to come to terms with. Even my mother, who has had a mastectomy at the age of 30 says to me, “Honey, at least my scars aren’t out on display to the world. I don’t know if I could handle thinning hair.”

KVC October 22, 2010 at 5:41 pm

Lesson # 2: don’t have high expectations for PRP ***, I meant.

Wanda October 29, 2010 at 12:45 pm

Hello everyone,

I really love reading all of this great information. I wish we had a single pill we could take and it would be over. I do miss my beautiful hair, praying to God that it will grow back. One thing I am doing is mediating, calming myself down, with positive results. I am seeing baby hairs growing on the sides of my head. I wish the doctors had the answer, but they don’t . So, to all of my hair sisters, keep the faith and don’t let yourself get down.

How are things going now Admin? KVC, you really shed some light on a lot of things. Thanks for the information. I wished they offered Mesotherapy in my area, but they don’t. Do you think you’ll do the transplant again? This is something a may consider in the future. What kind of hair transplant did you do?

Jenny November 7, 2010 at 9:32 am

Hey!
I’m 23 years old, my hair has been shedding since I was about 16. I think I’m still very much in denial and right now thats where I’d like to stay. My hair is kind of thin, I can cover up any signs of loss but it takes too much effort! every time a hair falls out I can’t express the pain and anxiety I feel. My doctors tell me its not severe but I’m very frightened for the future.

Would you recommend having this treatment prophylactically? Is it very expensive? I live in Canada and I would have to save up for a treatment like this for many years so if I should get this treatment I want to start saving now!

Your thoughts would mean the world to me.

Thank you!

Nicole Smith December 20, 2010 at 11:17 pm

Hi Admin,

I’m just wondering if you went for a fourth visit to Dr. Greco? Have you had any better results from the 4th treatment? If you could update, that would be so awesome. Thanks.

Mina January 7, 2011 at 10:47 am

Thank you so much for posting all this information for someone like me that didn’t know what to do. i didn’t even know what trichodynia was, but it is exactly what i feel like. i just make an appointment to get it check out. THANK You!!!!

Mina January 7, 2011 at 10:48 am

Thank you so much for posting all this information for someone like me that didn’t know what to do. i didn’t even know what trichodynia was, but it is exactly what i feel like. i just made an appointment to get it check out. THANK You!!!!

EDP January 26, 2011 at 3:46 pm

Hi All,

I don’t know if my PRP treatment is taking effect after six months or whether it is the kitchen remedies that I started some time ago that are effective but my shedding has been down to normal for a month now.
I would really like to hear from others who had PRP and to know how it affected your hair after several months.

In October I wrote about the massive shedding of 600+ hairs daily that I experienced following PRP. What is strange is that while my hair continued to fall out I noticed fine hairs at the side hairline above the ears where I never had hair. That never fell out like the rest and continues to grow longer and thicker.

Six weeks ago I decided to try home remedies for itching scalp after I had to stop Nizoral shampoo because it made me feel lightheaded. It has been a month now that my shedding is down to about 40 hairs a day which was my normal hair loss before I started thyroid medication which triggered all this misery.

It would be really helpful to all of us if you guys who had PRP would share your long-term experiences.

Thank you

admin February 11, 2011 at 4:25 pm

My apologies for the delay in writing. I did go for my 4th treatment last September, and I will be going again in April for the 5th.

I feel that the last treatment yielded better results than my 2nd and 3rd, but I still had dealt with a big shedding bout which I luckily got past. I definitely don’t feel that the PRP has worsened my hair loss in any way and I don’t think I ever experienced shedding as a result of it. I was shedding like crazy before I had ever got it done, and it has never worsened to that degree again… even though I shed more than I would like to. I think the PRP helps to breathe life into my hair, even while it’s still falling out. What I mean by that is.. well I’m still losing hair, it’s still progressing, but my hair seems to have more color and shine and not look like the dull blob it was beginning to prior to having this done. I think it’s probably helping to give my hair a long life span (miniaturization wise), but ultimately in time I know that I will most likely have to wear a hair piece. And while that’s not something I’m looking forward to, it’s not something that scares me quite as much as it used to. I’m going on my 12th year of hair loss and believe it or not, in many ways dealing with it gets easier.

I still believe the PRP treatment is helping me. I know several women who have had this done and posted that they didn’t see any results from it. I think it’s just like anything else when it comes to treating hair loss, and not everything will always work for everybody.

Happy Friday!

XOXO

julee May 15, 2011 at 8:58 am

Will you please tell us how your 5th treatment went?

admin May 23, 2011 at 1:52 pm

Hi Julee –

I did go for my 5th PRP treatment in April, and I’m very happy with how my hair is doing right now. Yes I am still shedding and my hair is progressively getting thinner over time – but the shedding is less, the color is more vibrant, and my hair just looks like it has more life to it. And that to me is a successful result. I am going to update my blog with my most recent PRP experience, but I need to write Dr. Greco to get some clarification on what was done differently between the 1st and the 2nd and 3rd treatments. My 1st, 4th and 5th were the same and other two were slightly different and my least effective and I want to get the information correct before I write about it.

xoxo

julee July 18, 2011 at 9:31 pm

Thank you for sharing. The day you posted is the day I went for my second treatment. This past month has been excruciating as far as hair loss goes….so I am needing a little hope. The second time was markedly different than the first. So, yes, I’d love to hear more about what was done differently for you. Thanks.

Wanda July 19, 2011 at 4:50 pm

In what way Julee? Was the second treatment positive or negative for your hair experience? A new hair loss clinic just opened in New Orleans; I think I may just give this a try. Thanks.

julee August 5, 2011 at 7:51 am

Sadly it has been worse. The first time I noticed that shedding didn’t increase and after about a month it began to dramatically reduce. I didn’t feel like I was having a lot of hair re=growth but the amount of shedding was noticeably different in the positive. This time, It’s been a month and a half and the shedding is consistently enormous. I don’t see the baby hair growth at the hairline that I saw before, instead it is more diffuse and becoming increasingly jagged.

Mimi August 18, 2011 at 5:44 pm

Once you stop this treatment, does your hair go back to the way it was or do you have to do this treatment the rest of your life? How often do you have to do this if on-going?

admin August 18, 2011 at 6:37 pm

@Mimi – If you stop the treatment then any benefit gained from it would be lost. Unfortunately, this is true for ANY hair loss treatment. So, if it worked for you and you wanted to keep the benefits it would have to be continued for life, or until somebody figures out a cure. I believe the recommended treatment timeframe is to have it done every 6-8 months.

It is important to note, this doesn’t work for everyone and I think the degree to which it will work or not varies greatly from person to person. I have heard positive stories from other women, and I have also heard from some women who feel that it didn’t help at all. That is the way it goes for all hair loss treatments.

xoxo

Ali January 13, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Dear Admin:

I haven’t read all of the comments here; I stopped after the first few to tell you that I told get it about well-meaning compliments. Even my own doctor, last time I was lamenting about my hair loss, told me that she was losing hair, too and that it was just age. She wouldn’t think so if she saw how much was coming out every day.

I also have fibromyalgia, which gives me what’s known as ‘brain fog’ and very poor memory/retention. If I mention it to anyone, they invariably say “Oh that’s just old age, it happens to me all the time.” I used to try and explain that, well, nooooo…it’s not actually the same thing. But one day I realized that no one was ever going to ‘get it,’ and I should just save all that energy – I need all the energy I can get.

So I understand in a couple of different ways how hard it is when people say things, even if they are well meaning, and I do believe that they are. Mostly.

I would love to hear back from the woman who was going to Europe about the treatment is working for her. I’m a writer…I wonder if the good doctor Greco would trade an article in a magazine for a treatment….hmmm…

Ali January 13, 2012 at 12:56 pm

Oops, I meant I ‘totally’ get it. Some writer!

jeremy April 16, 2013 at 6:04 pm

id like to know if PRP can cure male pattern baldness, could you please kindly reply? im 21 and suffering from this MPB.

Ruth July 18, 2013 at 9:28 pm

you inspire me!! thank you

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