Everything about micro-punctures, an effective treatment for hair loss

Experts tell us all about this scalp stimulation method proven to accelerate hair growth.

We all lose 50 to 100 hairs a day. Once this threshold is exceeded, the decline is considered “pathological”. In most cases it is a temporary disorder of the hair cycle called “telogen effluvium”. “It’s a sudden hair loss characterized by diffuse thinning. It can be caused by various factors such as emotional shock, pregnancy, Covid-19, vitamin deficiency, and even an infectious or inflammatory pathology, ”explains Lisa Bouhanna, director of the Center Chirurgico-Médical du Cuir Velu (CMCC) in Paris.

When this phenomenon is diagnosed, doctors often recommend a microcapillary technique to accelerate hair growth. This treatment, already well-known in skin care, appeared in the 1990s and has been gaining popularity in France for over a year, where it can now be used in aesthetic medicine clinics.

Stimulate growth

Concept ? Using a pen or a roller made of many mini-needles, the doctor makes microperforations on the scalp. “These microperforations improve blood circulation and increase the production of fibroblasts, the cells responsible for collagen renewal in tissues. This, in turn, will help promote the development of hair follicles, says Lisa Bouhanna. This somewhat “traumatic” effect on the scalp causes inflammation and thus scarring that stimulates the bulbs.

This painless method does not require walking through the operating room. “The mechanical aggression of micro-punctures is very beneficial and effective, even if it seems barbaric,” confirms Dr. Valérie Leduc, aesthetic medicine doctor and founder of Maison Epigenetic in Paris, “the fact of” attacking “the dermis and epidermis stimulates it. “

For the softest scalp, an anesthetic cream is applied to the treated area approximately 30 minutes before taking the action. The doctor then draws lines with a comb and then makes these micro-perforation, row by row, eight millimeters deep into the dermis. “It is not pleasant, but it is also not painful,” says Dr. Leduc. The treatment can be completed with a session of LED lights just before or after to increase blood flow and soothe redness. The process takes approximately twenty minutes on average.

Unlike mesotherapy, microneedling does not necessarily involve the injection of cosmetic active ingredients or vitamins into the scalp. “In some clinics, we add an additional product. It doesn’t hurt, but so far research in this direction has not been developed enough, ”says Lisa Bouhanna.

For example, in Dr. Leduc’s office, growth factors build up in the membrane at the base of the dermis, where all the stem cells are. The patient should then keep the solution on the scalp for 24 hours without shampooing.

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Progressive result

Typically, treatment requires a weekly or biweekly session, as needed, for approximately three months. Thereafter, maintenance sessions to maintain results may be recommended once or twice a year.

The first effects begin to be felt after the fourth date. “The fall is falling, there are no more strands falling out in the shower, the hair regains volume, vitality and structure,” says Dr. Leduc. Slowly, nature takes over and the hair returns to its normal cycle. Because if its benefits are proven, it’s important to remember that the treatment isn’t miraculous. “The patient may notice a ‘normalization’ of hair loss, not a complete stop to the loss,” emphasizes Lisa Bouhanna. We’ll never be able to stop it definitively, and we still lose our hair every day no matter what, even when things are going well.

Moreover, microneedling is of great importance in introducing into the hair routine of those who do not notice any particular thinning, but want to strengthen their hair. People who have thin or brittle hair can also use it with prophylaxis in mind: “For a woman who is losing volume and vitality, it is really worth it,” advises esthetist Valérie Leduc.

Side effects and contraindications

Patients may notice a slight temporary worsening of hair loss within a few weeks after surgery, which is perfectly normal. “It’s even positive. This means that the treatment is working and all hair is in the telogen phase (the third and last stage of the hair life cycle, which ends with its falling off, fn) fell out so that new hair grows back, ”says Lisa Bouhanna. The redness in the treated area may also persist for two to six hours after the session. In rare cases, small swellings appear. All these effects wear off quickly, so you can get back to work quickly.

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On the other hand, micro-puncturing of capillaries is not effective in a bald person who no longer has hair follicles. It also doesn’t work for a person with traction alopecia (a phenomenon that occurs as a result of practicing repeated too tight hairstyles) because there is no root on the skull anymore. The method is contraindicated for people suffering from skin or scalp diseases, problems with blood circulation or cancer, and also for pregnant or breastfeeding women. The cost of the procedure ranges from 150 to 300 euro per session, depending on the clinic.

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