How long does it take to see results from laser therapy treatments? Do they work for women? I am a 53-year-old female. Am I a candidate?
Dr. Friedman’s Answer:
Laser therapy is extremely successful in women who have miniaturized hairs still present on their scalp. When hair dies it does not just fall out, it miniaturizes meaning the growth cycle that usually is a growing phase of 1,000 days may start to decrease in time to 500 days or 300 days or 100 days.
Since hair normally grows 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch a month, if hair is not growing in as many months, it obviously does not grow as long. We commonly call this miniaturization because the hairs never reach the same length that the native hair had reached.
Another thing we noticed in miniaturization is the hair changes in texture and becomes finer in caliber. Not only is it shorter it is also finer and therefore does not give the person as much volume.
The nice thing about laser therapy is as long as you have miniaturized hairs present on the scalp we have found that the laser has been very successful in reversing the miniaturization and bringing the hairs back to normal caliber and texture as well as having the growth cycle go back to being much longer so the hairs can actually grow longer.
If someone does not have hair present, if their miniaturized hairs shrunk to the point of being basically nonexistent, then laser is going to be unsuccessful. The only way to bring back hair in that area is to transplant hair by hair transplantation using follicular units, which is extremely successful.
Laser therapy, although very successful, must be used every other day or any benefits seen will be reversed when the laser is stopped. It is like any medication you take. If you took a medication for high blood pressure and your blood pressure was well controlled for several years and then you decided to stop the medication, the chances are your blood pressure will go back up because the medication is what is keeping it under control.
Laser is the same thing. If you actually get good results with laser, the results will be reversed if you stop using the laser.
— Dr. Shelly Friedman, DO
Board Certified Hair Restoration Surgeon
Arizona’s Most Trusted Hair Loss Doctor
Named Phoenix Magazine’s Top Doc – Hair Transplant Surgeon