I often get questions about placing hair transplants into areas of scarring. Often these areas are the result of scalp reductions, scars from accidental injuries, or facelifts. Hair transplants can be placed into areas of scarring, but the graft survival rate drops to about 50%. Here we’ll talk about why this is and what is realistic when talking about expected results.
Skin Changes with Scarring
When any type of cut or skin injury heals, the physiology of the skin components is changed. The texture and color of the skin in the upper layers then develops into a scar. While the surface is changed, the blood vessels and the nutrients it carries are still present, though fewer than with healthy skin.
Effects on Results of Hair Transplant
Because of the decreased amount of blood vessels present, areas of scarring present less than ideal conditions for hair transplant surgery. This doesn’t mean it is impossible to perform.
Think of this scenario: If you transplanted several warm climate plants into a cooler climate, you would expect that only a portion of the plants would survive. This is also true for transplanting grafts into scarred areas. You can expect that some will not survive.
If you have an area of scarring present in an area normally populated with hair, a hair transplant surgery into that area may be the best, and possibly the only, method to cover the scar and blend It into the surrounding normal skin. As the hair grows, the scar is broken up, diminishing the appearance and visibility of the scar.
I have posted the photos of the scarring that was present on my head. There are before photos of the scarring and then you will see the after photo where hair has been used to break up and reduce the visibility of the scar.