Researchers have been able to regrow hair on bald patches by injecting the heads of follicular-challenged volunteers with a solution from their own blood.
The new treatment stimulates new stem cells below the skin which can assist regrowth, say specialists.
Injections of “platelet-rich plasma” (PRP) which have been extracted from the blood, are already used to combat ageing on the face and hands, reported the Sunday Telegraph.
In the latest research by scientists at the International Hair Research Foundation, the University of Brescia in Italy and the Hebrew University Medical Centre in Israel, used 45 volunteers with alopecia areata, affecting 2% of the population.
The patients had injections on one half of their head. Some were given the PRP, some traditional steroid cream, while others received a placebo.
Three treatments were given every month. Hair growth was checked by measuring the area where new hairs grew on the bald scalp.
Results showed the plasma injections led to significant hair regrowth in the bald patches, compared with the placebo and the steroid treatment.
Following the publication of the study in the British Journal of Dermatology, the scientists are hoping to develop a cream, so needles won’t need to be used.
Dr. Fabio Rinaldi told the Sunday Telegraph the new treatment could also help those suffering more common hair problems like male-pattern baldness.
He said: “We think it can help to regrow hair on people with androgenic alopecia. We believe it is the best treatment available, apart from surgery.”