I thought I was at a place of “acceptance”, or as I like to rephrase it, “realization” as I’m not sure if I will ever completely accept my hair loss. I’m a full-time wig wearer. I threw out all my snake oil and promise pills, my 25+ years dealing with hair loss and the ups and down down downs it brings has exhaustipated me.
I’m at a point where I am done with pills and chemicals, Lord knows what kind of lethal cocktail I was ingesting with everything I was putting into my body. Well after reading about PRP on-site I decided this is the one thing I have not tried and decided to look into it further. The premise of using what is in our own body to help heal is very appealing to me, not to mention the NO side effects. I decided I needed to try this treatment. I do realize that with anything else, probably the sooner one seeks treatment the better. That being said a lot of loss and damage has been realized to my hair and scalp as my condition has been going on for years. As much as I am looking for a miracle, I need to have realistic expectations about what PRP can do for me.
For any of you who are curious I decided I would take you along my PRP journey, visit by visit (I will explain why I already decided I would have more than one treatment). I will post pictures along the way – I feel it is my “duty” to put aside my embarrassment and help my sister’s here who have suffered like I have.
Please note: I will be as brief as possible, I am not a doctor, I will probably screw up on terms but I just want to give you a gist of the whole experience.
Treatment #1 – February 17, 2015. Performed by Dr. Joseph Greco in Sarasota Florida.
I met Dr. Greco and his staff. They were so pleasant, reassuring and very professional – I was instantly at ease, although nervous. I went into a medical room where blood was drawn from me, so 5 minutes. Then my blood was taken to the lab where they put it in a centrifuge (I believe that means spin the crap out of it?) This takes like 30-45 minutes. Meanwhile, Dr. Greco took me into his office and we discussed my hair loss history and he walked me through the amazing world of PRP.
He showed me research, before and after photos, explained the separation of blood and its components and explained matrixes – not only in treating hair loss but for joint injuries and even burn injuries. To say I was fascinated is a complete understatement – I never knew science was so amazing, nor how healing what is in our body can be, I could of listened to him for hours.
What I took away from this was it could not hurt in the least to have the goodness and proteins of my blood injected into my scalp. Dr. Greco asked me what my objectives were, you girls have seen my shaved head photos, I don’t think it is very realistic to expect I’m going to grow me some Rapunzel hair (darn). I said, I would like to keep what I have and hopefully have the texture improve and perhaps have some fill-in so that I could maintain a very short hair cut under my wig and not have to shave. He told me he thought my goals were very realistic.
I may get this wrong but Dr. Greco said his dad (not 100%) was a doctor and had a patient walk in on a Wednesday who was sick and told the doctor to make him better by Sunday because he had a wedding to go to. The doctor’s reply: “how long have you been sick”?
So as much as I want to see improvement instantly, the moral is patience. This is why I decided I will do more than one treatment to evaluate the personal benefits of PRP. I will say after 5 days my hair does actually feel less wiry and less dry. Dr. Greco says improvements are usually noticed after 4 months. I will take photos every month up until my next treatment, which I am planning to do in August (6 month mark).
Quickly, here is what happened.
After the blood was prepared, I sat in what looks like a dentist’s chair. Dr. Greco and his nurse wet my head with a spray bottle. Then they used a small tool that vibrated while they injected a topical numbing agent – the vibration tricks the mind to not notice your head is being injected. Pain level – please I’ve waxed my legs and that hurts way worse!
After that another small tool is used and rubbed over the scalp in a back and forth motion to disturb the follicles with a little bit of pain (which you don’t feel because you are numb) forcing the follicles to go into a “wake-up heal” mode. Immediately after the blood is injected into your scalp and voila – finito. Total time – around 15 minutes.
Hair wash next day, little tenderness for 2-3 days. I took zero pain meds.
Now here is where I am to practice my patience…
I need to know that I have done all I can in my hair loss battle so I am very grateful that I tried this treatment, met such compassionate, wonderful professionals in Dr. Greco and his staff and I look forward to seeing them again and having my follicles nourished
It has been my pleasure from the Get-go to meet Dr. Greco! Say that three times fast
hugs and swishes,