What is Androgenic alopecia or AGA?
Androgenic alopecia (AGA) is a condition affecting both men and women. It is also called as the aging hair loss, yet this condition is commonly seen in young individuals in a high incidence rate. Reasons might vary on individual basis but the major trigger factor is the sensitization of the follicle to androgen, specifically DHT or dihydrotestosterone a derivative of testosterone. This leads to pathology where the hair follicle receives altered or less nutrition due to DHT sensitization. This is seen in crown region of scalp, or in simple words the area covered if a crown is placed on the head.
AGA in men –
Usually men suffering with AGA are noted with hair line recession from the temporal and occipital region or the head triangle corners. The side corners and the center of scalp presents diffuse loss of hair. The condition begins from early 20’s and progress slowly as age increases. If the progression is at a higher rate it is also observed that near to complete baldness is reached till the age of 30 or 35.
AGA in women –
In women AGA is usually a lesser prevalent condition as compared to men. Also the hair loss pattern is different and mostly diffuse hair loss is seen all over the scalp, with prominence depending on hair style habits. The condition is triggered mostly due to underlying physical conditions like ovarian cyst, thyroid imbalance, multiple pregnancies with short periodic lapse, use of birth control pills and menopause.
Treatment of AGA –
Treatment of the condition is mostly to conserve the hair follicle by providing better nutrition and growth factors at the scalp. More specifically PRP or Platelet Rich Plasma therapy is very useful and if coupled with Mesotherapy, it gives even better results in some cases. PRP is derived from the patient’s blood making it acceptable to the scalp as its own body components are injected in concentrate form. PRP is rich concentrate of growth factor, healing factors, platelets, etc. Mesotherapy is a process of injecting small amounts of nutrition in the form of serum on the scalp, thus adding to the volume of hair by thickening the hair strand as a benefit of better nutrition.
Both PRP and Mesotherapy are followed by a session of micro-needling. This induces a false alarm of injury drawing the healing factors along with collagen and fibrin to the scalp. This helps in rejuvenation of the scalp and also increases the scalp thickness, providing with a rich blood supply. Both of the therapies give good results in patients if done with planned multiple sessions, for at least 3 to 6 months depending on the stage of hair loss.
Role of oral medications –
Along with the above mentioned series of treatments it is also equally important to give oral medications like nutritional supplements and herbal formulations to counter aggressive aging of the patient. Herbal medications help to counter aging with almost no side-effects. Herbal oils like Malatyadi oil, Kuntalkanti oil, Neelibhringadi oil, Bhringamlyakadi oil, etc. are helpful in preventing scalp dryness and nourishing the scalp externally.
Other treatments like Nasya – nasal medication with Prapundrikadi oil or other such medicated oil or ghrita (clarified butter) are recommended based on individual body type. Shirodhara – rhythmic oil flow over fore head with medicated oil or butter milk helps in reducing stress and stress induced triggers for AGA. Detoxification with the help of Panchkarma helps to get rid of toxin barriers and enhances the tissue with overall increased nutrition at cellular levels.
It is observed that the benefits of PRP and Mesotherapy are indeed fantastic but they last no longer than 1 or 2 years; thereafter the same process has to be repeated to counter lack of nourishment and aging. Here if Ayurvedic therapies along with herbal internal medications are coupled along with the sessions of PRP and Mesotherapy it gives a better and comparatively long lasting results.