What is a hair transplant procedure?
In this procedure, a dermato surgeon moves the hair from the back or side of the head to the front or top of the head (usually the area affected with hair loss). Hair transplant procedure is typically done in a clinic-setting under local anesthesia.
- Unnatural hair loss can be caused mainly due to heredity.
- Other causes can involve:
- Hormonal changes
- Scalp infections
- Hair pulling disorders
Candidates who can benefit with a hair transplant:
- Men or women with pattern baldness
- Patients who do not have enough donor hair sites
- Patients who have keloid scars after injury or a surgery
- Patients who have hair loss due to medication such as chemotherapy
Follicular Unit Extraction
FUE i.e. Follicular Unit Extraction method is a non-surgical hair transplant procedure where hair grows in groups of two or four and each group is known as a follicular unit. Then, the whole group of a follicular unit is extracted with automated punches. The procedure involves minimal downtime, it is painless and there’s no cutting, stitching etc. done. Therefore, there are no complication of falling prey to scar hypertrophy. The procedure is safe and performed under local anesthesia. Only the scalp area is numbed and the patient can talk, watch TV while the procedure is being performed. The entire procedure takes up to 4 to 6 hours with regular breaks. Not just the back of the scalp, but beard area, chest and back can also be used for extraction of individual follicles in this treatment. The patients can get back to normal activities from the very next day of the procedure. The final results show up in approx. 6-9 months and are long-lasting.
Follicular Unit Transplantation
Another highly-advanced but relatively conventional technique for hair transplantation, FUT which involves removing a strip of hair from the donor area where hair fall is less and hair growth is still thick. The area from where the strip is taken is sutured, which leads to the formation of a linear scar on the scalp. These strips containing the hair follicles are then divided into grafts consisting of one or two follicles. Thousands of these follicular unit grafts are placed on to the bald areas of the patient's scalp. Although, the hair growth from this method ensures natural growth pattern with no tell-tale signs of the surgery, the scar that it leaves behind makes it a less preferred choice among patients.
- Medication will be given to reduce pain
- Antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection
- Anti-inflammatory medications given to sooth swelling
In most of the cases, patients return to their routine life just after the dermato surgery. The transplanted hair will fall out 2-3 weeks after the procedure; making way for new hair growth. The exact results can be seen after 8-12 months of the surgery.
Side effects experienced after a hair transplant treatment are usually minor and subside within a week. Mentioned below are some of the most common side effects:
- Swelling of the scalp
- Bruising around the eyes
- Formation of crust on the scalp where hair is removed or transferred
- Numbness on the treated areas of the scalp
- Inflammation or infection of the hair follicles
- Unnatural-looking tufts of hair