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printHair Restoration

Combat Your Receding Hairline with Hair Transplants

Hair loss affects approximately one-half of the male population, and to some degree some women as well. There are many products that claim to correct hair loss, including creams, medications and shampoos. For most people, none of these work effectively. Fortunately, hair transplantation is a safe and effective way to combat hair loss.

Hair transplantation is a surgical procedure, in which healthy hair from the back or sides of the scalp is transplanted to balding or thinning areas. This simple procedure takes approximately three hours and is performed in an especially equipped doctor's office.

The Center for Cosmetic Enhancement®, a Division of Skin and Cancer Associates, offers micro, mini and laser hair transplants. Our physicians have been performing hair transplants for over 30 years. We have pioneered advances in this area, including the use of lasers. If you are considering hair transplantation, we urge you to consider all of the options that are available to you.

Frequently Asked Questions About Hair Transplantation

What is hair transplantation?

Hair Transplantation is a minor surgical procedure in which small strips of hair-bearing skin grafts containing approximately 6 to 14 hairs are removed from non-balding areas of the scalp and transferred to the bald areas. To create a more natural appearance, the grafts are divided into smaller mini or micro grafts having 1 to 3 hairs and matched to the direction of the original hair.

While for most people, the preferred method of hair transplantation entails the use of mini or micro grafts; treatments are individualized based on the specific needs of the patients.

What types of baldness can be treated by this procedure?

Common baldness (androgenetic alopecia) in men and women can be successfully treated with hair transplantation. The hereditary condition may begin when a person is in their teens, twenties or thirties. While women suffering from this inherited condition do not become completely bald, they can experience considerable thinning of the hair. Hair transplantation can increase the volume of the hair in the thinned or bald area. Hair loss resulting from scarring also reacts well to hair transplantation.

Is it a proven, effective technique?

Hair transplantation for treatment of common thinning of the hair or baldness has been used successfully for over 35 years. The procedure is based on the principle of donor dominance, which states that transplanted hair will grow as if it were still in its original location. Thus, hair from non-balding areas of the scalp will continue to grow normally when moved to balding areas.

Are there any limitations in activity in the postoperative period?

Yes. Strenuous physical exertion should be avoided for at least two weeks following surgery. Generally, a moderate level of activity can be resumed the day after surgery, with special attention taken to protect the head.

What follow-up visits are necessary after surgery?

Usually, a patient returns to the doctor's office the day after surgery to have the bandage removed. Approximately one to two weeks later the sutures are removed. At that time, those patients opting for additional transplants can begin planning for the next treatment.

When can the scalp be shampooed?

Shampooing can be resumed approximately three days after surgery. However, since it takes several weeks for the grafts to become firmly anchored, special precautions should be taken. The use of very mild, non-medicated shampoo is recommended for the first three weeks following surgery.

What happens to the donor area?

Generally, small hairless scars will form on the area the grafts or strips are removed. However, surrounding hair easily conceals these scars.

Can I expect a "full head" of hair?

Hair transplantation can add density to hair in a thinned or bald area, giving it the appearance of "fullness." However, full hair restoration is not possible since the procedure redistributes existing hair, not create new ones.

What percentage of grafts produces hair?

At times, a few grafts may produce a reduced number of hairs. However, in nearly all cases, transplanted grafts will grow into new hair.

When will the grafts begin to grow hair?

Due to the manipulation involved, the hairs in the larger transplanted grafts usually fall out. These hairs are typically replaced with new, permanently growing hair in 2 to 6 months. Small transplanted grafts often continue to grow immediately after surgery.

Where should the hairline be placed?

Depending on the severity of the thinning or balding area, age of the patient and availability of the donor area, the hairline should frame the face appropriately. Grafts should be placed in pattern that matches the direction of original hair, ensuring a natural look for the lifetime of the patient.

How long with the transplanted grafts produce hair?

Transplanted grafts will grow as if it were still in its original donor area.

What are the actual steps of the procedure?

First, both the donor and recipient sites are anesthetized. Then the desired grafts (known as regular grafts) or strips (known as mini and/or micro grafts) are removed from the donor and carefully transplanted to the recipient area.

How painful is the procedure?

Most patients experience very little pain or discomfort after surgery. Since only the outer layer of the skin is involved, risks or complications are unusual.

How long is the surgical session?

Typical sessions take two to three hours.

What preparation is required?

Hair shampooed either the evening before or morning of the procedure. Avoidance of all alcoholic beverages and aspirin/non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs for two weeks prior to and one week following the procedure.

Is a haircut recommended before the procedure?

No. The donor sites are easier to conceal just after surgery if the surrounding hair is moderately long.

Is the procedure expensive?

The cost depends on the amount of surgery required. In general, it costs a little more than to purchase, maintain and replace a good hairpiece.

Will my insurance pay for the procedure?

Normally, this procedure is not covered by insurance. However, it is best to consult with your insurance company regarding reimbursement.

Can a hairpiece be worn during the postoperative period?

To decrease the chance of infections, it is best to avoid occlusion of the surgical sites for at least two weeks.

What if more areas lose hair after transplantation is completed

Initial long-term planning is essential in order to leave a reserve of potential donor sites, should further transplantation be required.

Should I wait until I am very bald before having transplantation?

No. Judicious placement of grafts in early stages of baldness offers the advantage of making the progression of hair loss less apparent.

Can an unsatisfactory result be repaired?

Yes. Corrective procedures can be performed under certain circumstances.

Who should perform the procedure?

The surgery should be performed by a physician with expertise in hair transplantation.

Are there other surgical techniques used to enhance the results?

Yes. These include scalp reductions and mini-reductions. You can learn more about these techniques at the time of your consultation.