Memorial Hospital Aesthetic, Plastic, and Reconstructive Surgery Department experts answered the 10 most frequently asked questions about hair transplantation for you.
Individuals who complain about hair loss prefer hair transplantation as the most effective solution. Those who consider undergoing this operation should first read the expert opinions.
Who can undergo the hair transplantation procedure?
All patients with male pattern hair loss can undergo hair transplantation. Male pattern hair loss develops with the effect of male hormone in individuals who are genetically predisposed to it. The cells that produce the hair around the hair follicle die over time with the effect of this hormone. Thus, the hair first gets thinner, then begins not to grow, and eventually falls out completely. Hair transplantation is the most definitive and permanent treatment for these patients.
Is there a certain age limit for hair transplantation?
For the procedure, the type of hair loss is more decisive than the age. If the skin becomes visible when viewed with the naked eye, it means that the hair density in that area has reduced below 50 percent of the normal density. In this case, the most effective treatment for the patient may be hair transplantation.
Why is the age factor important in this treatment?
The most important factor that age is determinative in the transplantation procedure is whether the hair loss is over or not. In addition to being a lifelong event, male pattern hair loss slows down after the age of 39-40 years. Therefore, it should be considered that hair loss may continue after transplantation in patients under these ages and the patient may need second or third sessions later.
How long does the hair transplantation procedure take?
The hair transplantation procedure takes 3 to 5 hours. If the individual does not want this procedure to be known in his/her work and social environment, a time of about 15 days is needed for healing after the procedure. If the patient has no such concerns, s/he can return to activities of daily living within 2 days.
How long does it take for the patient to regain new hair?
After the operation, red crusts occur in the transplantation area. The patient prevents this crusting by washing the hair once a day after transplantation. In 7-10 days, the crusts completely fall out and the transplantation area heal. The transplanted hair also falls out along with these crusts. Thus, within 15 days to 1 month, the patient regains the pre-transplantation appearance. After 3 months, no change occurs in its appearance. New hair starts to grow slowly after 3 months. The change is mostly seen in the fifth and sixth months. In the next period, an increase of 10 percent occurs every month and 90 percent of the transplanted hair appears in the ninth month after transplantation. The remaining 10 percent continues to grow for up to 1 year. The final result of the transplantation is achieved in 1 year.
Does hair transplantation have any disadvantages in terms of patient health?
This procedure is an extremely risk-free procedure performed under local anesthesia. No side effects that may affect the patient's health in the postoperative period have been observed so far.
Is hair transplantation a repeatable procedure?
Hair transplantation may require multiple sessions depending on the size of the transplantation area and whether the patient's hair loss continues.
Is the appearance of new hair controllable?
The result of transplantation completely depends on the technique. The size and direction of the grafts used during transplantation determine the result. When the grafts, called the follicular units, are placed in the appropriate size and direction for the natural growth of the hair, the transplantation yields an extremely natural result.
What are the new techniques used for hair transplantation?
The newest technique in this regard is the procedure of gathering the hair from the donor area one by one with the help of 1mm metal pipes specially prepared for this procedure, called FUE (follicular unit extraction). In this procedure, no incision or suture is made on the scalp. The recovery process is very fast.
In the future, will there be options that can replace hair transplantation and give the patient a more natural appearance?
Currently, the most effective treatment for male pattern hair loss is hair transplantation. Although studies on hair cloning are still ongoing, there is no result yet. If this becomes successful, it will be possible to transplant a few hair follicles from the scalp to the hairless area without restriction by multiplying them in a laboratory environment.
Prepared by the Medical Editorial Board. Our health library contents have been prepared for informational purposes only and with the scientific content on the registration date. For all your questions, concerns, diagnosis or treatment about your health, please consult your doctor or health institution.