What is “Hair Banking” & Is It Worth It?
For years, women of childbearing age who face a chronic illness have had the option of freezing, preserving, and “banking” their eggs for later use if their condition prevented them from producing eggs in the future. A similar approach – though one that is far more speculative, unproven, and questionable – is now being promoted for hair restoration.
Specifically, a British company is offering “hair banking.” According to the company, they extract hair follicles from a patient much in the same way follicles are removed in an FUE hair transplant procedure. They will then place those follicles in cryogenic storage. But those follicles supposedly will not just be sitting idle waiting for future transplantation.
The company claims that they can multiply the hairs using unique cells in the follicles called dermal papilla (DP). These cells are found at the base of a hair follicle and work alongside skin surface cells to control the formation of the hair shaft. During the gradual process of hair loss, the DP loses cells which results in the follicles becoming smaller, causing hair to thin and get shorter.
According to the company, when the donor is ready for a hair transplant, the DP-fortified follicles could then be injected back into the scalp, where they will theoretically rejuvenate old hair follicles and generate new ones.
A Risky Bet
The key word is theoretically. While the technology certainly exists to extract and preserve hair follicles for later use, the ability to clone and multiply DP cells in a way that they can be effectively used to treat hair loss remains underdeveloped and unproven. That means the underlying premise behind hair banking is one that counts on future medical and technological advances that may or may not come to pass.
In this sense, hair banking shares some similarities to the now-debunked practice of cryonics, where people who die from a chronic illness have their bodies frozen in the hope that one day, science and medicine will come up with the cure for whatever disease or condition led to their death.
If you are ready to place a bet on hair banking, you also need to be prepared to wager a significant amount of money on that bet. But at present, hair banking is a risky proposition with questionable odds.
Resolve Your Hair Loss Issues With Proven and Effective Solutions Today
Individuals who are currently suffering from hair loss have plenty of proven, effective, and reliable options for hair restoration that can give them full, natural-looking hair today. At the Miami Hair & Skin Institute, our world-renowned hair restoration physicians offer a wide range of surgical and non-surgical options for addressing hair loss.
If you are ready to do something about your hair loss, please schedule a personal evaluation at the Miami Hair & Skin Institute. Contact us online or call our office directly at 305-925-0222.