Results from the retrospective study were shared at SCALE 2023.
Study investigators Chloé Walker, MD, MHS, and Porcia Love, MD, FAAD, shared their published findings from a retrospective study of using platelet-rich plasma for cicatricial alopecia (CA) at SCALE 2023 in Nashville, Tennessee. In their poster presentation, Walker and Love detailed how platelet-rich plasma can be successfully used to treat CA in patients with skin of color.
Walker and Love noted that platelet-rich plasma has previously demonstrated positive therapeutic results in nonscarring alopecia when injected into the affected area. However, Walker and Love also emphasized that there is “limited evidence to substantiate the efficacy of PRP in those who have failed first-line corticosteroid therapy for cicatricial alopecia.” Therefore, the study investigators aimed to evaluate post-treatment outcomes of platelet-rich plasma in a skin of color cohort with CA.
A retrospective analysis was conducted for patients with skin of color, including Fitzpatrick skin types IV to VI, with a confirmed diagnosis of CA and who underwent platelet-rich plasma treatment at River Region Dermatology & Laser from 2016 to 2022.
In total, 187 patients were identified, and 11 patients were included in the retrospective study. All patients in the study were Black/African American women with an average age of diagnosis at 57 years old (total range 40 to 72 years).
Sixty-four percent of patients (n=7) had a diagnosis of central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia (CCCA), 27% (n=3) had been diagnosed with lichen planopilaris (LPP)/frontal fibrosing alopecia (FFA), and 9% (n=1) had been diagnosed with nonspecific early scarring alopecia. Additionally, 64% of patients had concomitant androgenetic alopecia.
All patients from the study failed preceding topical therapy and intralesional steroid injections. After an average of 4 platelet-rich plasma sessions at 4-to-6-week intervals, 73% (n=11) showed improvements, including 75% (n=6) with CCCA, 13% (n=1) with LPP/FFA, and 13% (n=1) with nonspecific early scarring alopecia.
There were no reported adverse events, disease progression, or discontinuation of treatment.
“These study findings demonstrate global improvement in hair density post-PRP therapy in 73% of patients with SOC. Consistent with other studies, PRP may be effective in mild CA, concomitant AGA, and/or those with unsatisfactory outcomes from conventional treatment,” concluded Walker and Love.
Walker is a clinical research fellow at River Region Dermatology & Laser. Love is a board-certified dermatologist at and the founder of River Region Dermatology & Laser, and a clinical associate professor at the University of Alabama School of Medicine.