Whether for good or bad, our physical appearance will affect how people we interact with view us. Hair transplants are one of the most common procedures men use to avoid being viewed negatively because of balding or thinning hair. There are some benefits and risks associated with hair transplants, just as there are with any surgery. These benefits and risks should be considered, discussed and carefully weighed by each individual when deciding the best choice to make for their needs.
What is Hair Transplant Surgery?
Hair transplant surgery is a procedure where healthy hair follicles are removed from one area of the head and then implanted into the bald or thinning area of the scalp. Local anesthesia is injected to both sites prior to starting. Using precise cuts, the hair follicles are retrieved from the “donor” area of the scalp. Before implantation of the new follicles, they are microscopically examined and cleansed of any material that would impair the regrowth of healthy hair. Small incisions are made by the surgeon in the desired location on the scalp and the new hair follicles are implanted in the desired area of the scalp. Stitches are then inserted and a bandage applied. Hair transplant surgery allows for full regrowth of hair and is considered a top option for regeneration of hair growth.
What Happens After?
Once the procedure is completed, the patient receives instructions on cleansing the scalp and maintaining the integrity of the implant site. Daily bandage changes are an important part of the after-care. Protecting the implanted area from becoming infected and ensuring that the area does not form scabs helps to ensure success of the hair transplant. Patients are sent home with antibiotics as a precautionary measure against developing infection, but keeping the area clean is the primary defense against infection.
It’s important that the patient understands that hair transplant surgery is not an immediate solution for baldness, nor are the results immediate. While the transplanted hair follicles do not die, patients should be prepared for the implanted follicles to fall out after one week or so. Over the next few months, the new hair follicles will redevelop in the implant site. To avoid anxiety and frustration, patients should clearly understand this process before the transplant is performed. Patients should also understand that hair in other areas of the scalp may fall out in future years, leaving the hair transplant area looking patchy. Addressing and understanding these benefits and risks ensures the patient is making the best decision and knows what to expect during the healing and regrowth process.
The choice to have hair transplant surgery gives many people the ability to restore self-confidence while regaining lost hair. Looking the best you possibly can frees individuals from concerns and worries about being judged negatively by others. By evaluating and understanding the benefits and risks, each person can make the right decision for their individual needs.