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Hair Loss Treatment and Restoration

At Lahey Hospital and Medical Center’s Hair Loss Center of Excellence, our staff are highly specialized in the diagnosis, management and treatment of hair loss affecting patients of all ages. We understand how devastating hair loss can be, and we aim to provide our patients with safe, evidence-based and effective treatments. We use a holistic approach to address the factors involved in each patient’s hair loss issue and tailor treatment to the individual.

There are a variety of potential causes for alopecia, also known as medical hair loss. A comprehensive approach is necessary for proper diagnosis and treatment, so it is important to consult with a skilled dermatology provider specializing in hair loss disorders to ensure you receive accurate advice and treatment.

Causes of alopecia include:
  • Short- or long-term illness
  • Hereditary factors
  • Iron deficiency
  • Poor diet
  • Hormonal imbalances, including thyroid disease
  • Physical or emotional stress
  • Certain hairstyles/hair styling practices
  • Infections
Hair loss can present in the following ways:
  • Patterned hair loss in men and women (with thinning on the top of the scalp for women and at the crown of the scalp and the hairline for men)
  • Telogen Effluvium, a type of hair loss that involves hair shedding all over the scalp
  • Patchy or more widespread hair loss across the scalp or face (eyebrows, eyelashes, beard) due to inflammation or an auto-immune attack on hair follicles

Some forms of hair loss are temporary, and the hair may regrow eventually. Other forms may be permanent if left untreated. Our specialists are here to assist with whatever type of hair loss condition you’re experiencing.

Our Providers

Founder and director of LHMC’s Hair Loss Center of Excellence, Dr. Maryanne Makredes Senna is a board-certified dermatologist. She brings comprehensive, evidence-based care to our hair loss patients.

Maryanne Senna, MD
Dermatology Maryanne Senna, MD

Appointments & Your Visit

We treat all hair loss conditions, but do our best to expedite appointments for cases that require prompt attention, including:

  • Lichen planopilaris (LPP)
  • Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia (FFA)
  • Central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia (CCCA)
  • Discoid Lupus Erythematosus (DLE)
  • Folliculitis decalvans
  • Dissecting cellulitis of the scalp
  • Patients with moderate to severe alopecia areata, affecting 30% or more of the scalp
  • Patients with chemotherapy or cancer therapy (endocrine therapy) induced alopecia

If you know you have one of the conditions above, you must provide one of the following to our office by faxing to 781-744-5687 Attn. Lisa Duggan:

  1. A signed dermatology provider attestation
  2. A biopsy report (pathology report) confirming one of the following diagnoses:
  • Lichen planopilaris (LPP)
  • Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia (FFA)
  • Central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia (CCCA)
  • Discoid Lupus Erythematosus (DLE)
  • Folliculitis decalvans
  • Dissecting cellulitis of the scalp
  • Scarring alopecia or scarring hair loss
  • Chemotherapy induced hair loss

Prior to your first consultation with an alopecia specialist at LHMC, you will be asked to complete a patient intake form regarding your history of hair loss. It is very important that you complete this form thoughtfully in its entirety as this information is critical for helping your dermatologist understand your hair loss condition. Please bring your completed intake form to the appointment. If you do not receive the packet that includes this form prior to your appointment, please call us at 781-744-8444.

When you arrive, ensure that your hair is washed, dry and free of product.

Wash your hair the night before your appointment, do not wash your hair on the day of the appointment as this can affect some of the tests that are performed.

If you have had any blood work and/or scalp biopsy results done in the recent past, please bring all reports related to these tests.

Have a list of your current medications and the approximate date that you started them (month and year suffice).

Come prepared with a list of the types of hair loss treatments you have tried and for how long.

The team will review the materials you were asked to bring to your visit and the dermatologist will ask follow-up questions.

The dermatologist will then examine your scalp and hair. If needed, further blood work or a scalp biopsy will be requested.

Baseline photographs will be taken and uploaded directly into your medical record for comparison purposes. These are an important part of the periodic evaluation process as they provide an objective way of measuring the progress of treatment.

Your dermatologist will review the diagnosis and the cause of your hair loss condition with you, provide recommendations for individualized treatment, and answer any questions you may have.

Based on a patient’s history and overall condition, a personalized treatment plan is created based on:

  1. Manifestations of disease
  2. Results of skin biopsy and blood analysis
  3. The patient’s overall health and lifestyle
  1. How long will it take for me to see results?
    It takes time to stimulate the follicles to regrow hair. Once hair starts to come back, it grows at a rate of about 1 centimeter a month. Like watching grass grow, changes to hair are gradual. Looking in the mirror every day, patients will often not notice slow but steady improvement. You should be consistent with your treatment for at least 6 months, and not expect to see any improvement in the first month or two.
  2. How long do I have to be on my treatment once I’ve started?
    Treatments for hair loss are long-term. If you had a medical condition such as high cholesterol, for example, you wouldn’t expect to take a medication for 2 months and have perfect cholesterol for the rest of your life. The same is true for hair. If you discontinue a hair loss treatment, your body will reset to doing whatever it was doing before, meaning that any hair you held onto because of the treatment and any hair you grew as a result will be shed. This is important to know when considering the best treatment regimen for you, and why in some cases starting just one or two treatments is better than doing every possible treatment all at once. If you start many treatments all at once, you won’t know if just one or two might have been equally helpful, and then you’ll be stuck doing all of them for the long-term.
  3. There are a lot of products that promise to grow hair fast and reverse hair loss immediately, should I try these?
    Most of these products do not have scientific research to back up their claims. Before spending lots of money on a treatment that has not been proven to be effective, check with your dermatologist.
  4. Is it safe to color my hair?
    Perming, coloring and heat styling can all damage your hair and make it more difficult to obtain the result you’re looking for. Depending on the type of hair loss you have, your dermatologist can provide more specific advice.
  5. Do laser light devices help hair grow?
    While laser light devices can help with some forms of hair loss, they do not work for everyone. The correct type of laser device must also be selected for each individual patient to ensure that light reaches the scalp. There are many other less expensive treatment options that can be just as effective, so before spending money, make sure that you know enough to make an informed decision.
  6. Do biotin or other supplements work to regrow hair?
    No. Despite all of the misinformation on the internet about how supplements and biotin can regrow hair, there no evidence that supports these claims. Not only has the use of biotin never been proven to treat hair loss, it can also falsely elevate thyroid blood tests and falsely decrease some cardiac blood tests. Only if a patient has a deficiency in iron or other vitamins and minerals may s/he benefit from supplementation. This will be discussed during consultation.

Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy (PRP) for Hair Thinning

Platelet Rich Plasma therapy (PRP) is a restorative treatment that uses plasma from your own blood to trigger hair re-growth. PRP therapy stimulates the body’s inactive hair follicles to re-grow healthier, thicker hair and aids in the body’s natural healing process. Administered in our office, PRP is a simple, non-surgical treatment that takes less than an hour per appointment.

Frequently Asked Questions About PRP Therapy

PRP has proven effective for common non-scarring forms of hair loss,   also known as male or female pattern hair thinning.

PRP is unlikely to be effective for the following hair loss conditions:

  • Patients with a medical condition affecting the platelets, including patients with a very low platelet count (thrombocytopenia).
  • Patients who have had a bacterial infection of the blood within the past year.
  • Patients who have a current infection of the scalp.
  • Patients with a history of blood or bone marrow cancer.

PRP has been used for its wound healing properties in several medical specialties for more than 20 years and for hair loss treatments since 2004. The procedure is very safe and most patients who experience side effects find them manageable or negligible. Recent studies speak to the efficacy of using PRP to treat female and male pattern hair loss.

You will be scheduled for 3 appointments, one month apart.

Generally, it takes 3 to 6 months to notice initial hair re-growth. Individual results vary. Within 6 to 12 months, most people notice remarkable improvement.

No. PRP is not covered by medical insurance.

The cost of the procedure is $2,700 total for three monthly injections. The cost is all out-of-pocket.

Prior to your first injection, you will be expected to pay 50% of the treatment cost. The remaining 50% of the cost is due prior to the second injection.

What To Expect During PRP Treatment

You may be required to have a hair loss consultation before your first treatment. If the dermatologist determines that you are a good candidate for PRP treatments, you will be scheduled for your first visit.

You will be scheduled for three appointments, one month apart.

You should not take ibuprofen or aspirin (other than baby aspirin) within 48 hours prior to your PRP treatment.

You should not have had a steroid injection into the scalp within 1 month of your treatment or used oral steroids (like prednisone) within 2 weeks prior to treatment.

If you have had a significant illness or fever within one month of when your PRP treatment is scheduled, you should not undergo treatment that month.

On the day of your treatment, our staff will ask you medical questions and make sure you’re comfortable. One of our board-certified doctors will explain the procedure, benefits, and side effects of PRP. The doctor will then ask you to sign a consent form.

Next, a nursing staff member will draw blood from your arm and hand the tube to the doctor. The blood will be put into a machine called a centrifuge that separates the platelet-rich plasma to be used for your treatment. This plasma will have about 5 times more platelets than your normal circulating blood.

Once the PRP is separated, our board-certified doctor will inject it into the scalp at the area where your hair loss began. This amplifies the body’s natural ability to grow thicker, denser hair in the affected area.

Most patients experience minimal discomfort and can drive or travel home after the treatment. It is a good idea to bring a head covering or hat to wear after the treatment.

Our Location

Hair Loss Center of Excellence
Lahey Hospital & Medical Center
67 South Bedford Street
East Lobby, Suite 100E
Burlington, MA 01803
P: 781-744-8444