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Hair replacement surgery, Hair Transplant Methods and Procedure


Hair replacement surgery is a recent scientific development which involves the surgical movement of permanent hair along with its roots to an area of bald or balding skin. There are various ways in which this can be done, but the most often used today is hair transplantation.

There are even different methods in which Hair transplantation can be done. Transplant techniques, such as punch grafts, mini-grafts, micro-grafts, slit grafts, and strip grafts are generally performed on patients who desire a more modest change in hair fullness. Flaps, tissue-expansion and scalp-reduction are procedures that are usually more appropriate for patients who desire a more dramatic change.

Hair transplantation process

Hair transplantation is an outdoor treatment done in a doctor's office and can take between 4 to 8 hours depending on the extent of the transplantation. Traditionally, hair transplantation has been performed in multiple planned sessions that are spaced 3-6 months apart. A typical session might average between 150 and 300 grafts.

However, more recently the trend is to place more grafts per session. It is not uncommon for sessions to involve 750 to 2000 grafts. The purported benefit of these "megasessions" is reduced number of hair transplantation visits to achieve hair restoration in a shorter period of time.

The possible downfall is reduced overall graft survival where grafts are packed very close together. The procedure is usually done under local anaesthetic and does not cause too much discomfort. In most cases, immediately after the hair transplant the hairs fall out of the grafts, and do not regrow for 1-3 months.

The donor sites gradually heal to leave slight scarring but this is concealed by "lifetime" hair growing around the site. Patients need to be aware that hair transplantation does not produce an instaneous head of hair but the results are seen over time.

Complications in hair transplantation procedures

Possible complications in hair transplantation procedures may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Patchy hair growth - Sometimes, the growth of newly placed hair has a patchy look, especially if it is placed next to a thinning area. This can often be corrected by additional surgery.
  • Bleeding and/or wide scars - Tension on the scalp from some of the scalp reduction techniques can result in wide scars and/or bleeding.
  • Grafts not taking - Occasionally, there is a chance that the graft may not "take." If this is the case, surgery must be repeated.
  • Infection - As with any surgical procedure, there is the risk of infection.

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