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:
Additional PRP Therapy Resources: