No one likes to see their appearance changing in the mirror, a sign that time is passing and that gravity is winning. But aside from wrinkles, more than half of all men are faced with an additional aging challenge: male pattern baldness.
Often, this begins long before a man’s 40th birthday and there are things you should know about hair loss according to Reead. Many believe that accepting their balding fate is the only option. However, this is simply not the case, and one of the best treatments available is hair transplants.
Hair transplantation or restoration is a surgical method that allows the hair follicles to be moved from the donor – donor region to the hairless region, or where the hair is thinned, it is the receiving – recipient region.
It is used to treat various forms and degrees of permanent hair loss in both sexes. Surgical hair restoration has come a long way since its inception. Through painful, invasive surgeries that left large scars and resulted in an unnatural appearance, to this day, much more comfortable procedures and incomparably better results.
Given that each patient has a unique and unique problem, there are no two equal cases, determining and planning the amount of hair to be implanted is made depending on the size of the problem, as well as the patient’s condition, or the condition of the donor surfaces.
Planning of the intervention is done according to strictly defined rules and according to the professional protocol. These rules define exactly what is the minimum number of hair extensions per cm2 required to achieve favorable intervention results.
Before beginning any surgical intervention, less invasive options must be considered first. in this case, hair loss drugs like Finasteride and Minoxidil are recommended to assess whether hair loss can be slowed, or in some cases reversed.
If drugs do not produce enough of a result, the next step is determining whether there’s enough hair to be transplanted. The type of hair that a patient has is also something to consider, as a course and wavy hair offer better coverage to transplant than fine hair does.
Only a safe donor region should be used for hair transplantation. It is a zone where hair follicles generally remain for the rest of their lives. These are the occipital and lateral regions of the chapter. The insensitivity of this region to the hormonal effect is the reason that hair transplantation is even possible.
In the last decade, a major step forward has been made in the form of Follicular Unit Extraction – FUE hair transplant procedure and even more advanced FUE precise method, which leaves no noticeable traces of intervention in the hands of an experienced surgeon.
Currently, there are two types of hair transplant procedures available. The first is called Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT), which involves transplanting strips of hair follicles from places of healthy growth to places of patchy growth. FUT requires suturing the donor graft sites closed, which means more recovery time.
The second option is the Follicular Unit Excision. FUE involves more a precise technique where the surgeon moves individual hair follicles, one-by-one. This option is much less invasive and therefore has a shorter recovery time overall. The technique requires minimally invasive intervention, solely with the use of special needles, so there is no scar or incision after the intervention.
For both procedures, patients only need one or two days of downtime and must keep bandages in place. A little tenderness is normal during the healing process, but most people return to their normal routines within a few days. Each procedure can take anywhere from 2 to 12 hours total, but these can be spread apart in multiple sessions.
Following the procedure—for the next week or so—your scalp will look a little rough. You will not be permitted to wear any type of hat, which would put unnecessary pressure on the grafts, possibly dislodging them. It is expected that the transplanted hair will fall out as the new hair begins to grow. Within about a month—before your very eyes—a new hairline will begin to emerge!
Side Effects to be Aware of
As with any surgery, the risk of infection and scarring exists. One condition unique to hair transplants is called ‘shock loss,’ which is the loss of the transplanted and existing hair. If there are too many incision sites, the incisions themselves are large or deep, or if too much anesthetic is used, shock loss can occur.
Researching and being comfortable with your chosen surgeon will mitigate each of these side effects. It is far more advisable to spend a little extra time choosing the right clinic and team to perform your surgery, than it is to spend thousands correcting mistakes, like too much hair transplanted, grafts placed at odd angles, or an ill-suited hairline.
As the adage goes, “you get what you pay for.” And in this case, hair transplants will run you anywhere from $3,000-$7,000 for FUT and closer to $10,000 for FUE, which typically bills per hair follicle transplanted. Just like any surgical procedure, traveling to countries where costs are lower is an option, but extreme diligence with choosing a clinic, plus factoring in travel costs and a plan for what do in case things don’t go as expected is imperative.
The decision to intervene on a receding hairline is yours alone. Only you will be able to determine if the risks, cost, and recovery associated with surgery are worth the peace of mind that having a full head of hair brings. That being said, hair transplantation has come a long way, and it’s definitely within the realm of possibilities to turn back the hands of time!
Before the hair transplant intervention, consult the institution where the intervention is performed in each case. These consultations conclude whether the patient is suitable for the intervention, and if so, what are the options and what can be expected.