In addition to ageing, vitamin deficiency, poor food, certain drugs, illness and stress, a family history of baldness as well as excessive helmet or hat use, and dandruff are also potential reasons for hair thinning or hair loss. Hair loss and baldness can have a negative impact on your appearance and self-confidence. In many circumstances, hair loss is a problem that can be reversed or healed. However, in certain situations, permanent damage is done to the scalp or hair follicles, making hair growth virtually difficult. Fortunately, hair transplant surgery is a gift from contemporary science that has made hair restoration possible in these situations.
What Is the Process of Hair Transplantation?
A hair transplant is a dermatological surgery that is performed to restore hair to a region of the scalp that has sparse hair or baldness due to genetics.
The following are the different types of hair transplantation:
FUT or Follicular Unit Hair Transplantation
FUT is one of the most successful and popular hair transplantation methods. Your hair appears to be natural, and it also operates in a natural manner. With the use of high-resolution stereomicroscopes, the risk of hair damage that occurs when a transplant is performed under the naked eye is significantly reduced.
During this type of surgery, the hair is transplanted into the scalp as follicular units naturally occurring in the scalp. There is a procedure in which a donor strip is removed from the hair-bearing donor location and then dissected into microscopic units. Once the follicular units have been extracted for implanting into the recipient, the procedure is repeated. Before the next step can be carried out it is necessary to harvest and apply small follicular units to the balding scalp area in a manner that is similar to the way natural follicular units may appear.
However, in FUT, the extraction from the donor site may result in a linear scar on the recipient site.
FUE (Follicular Hair Extraction)
FUE is a technique that is quite similar to FUT, however it is more sophisticated. Individual hair follicles are taken from the donor site and then transplanted to the balding area using this technique. There is the least amount of injury to the donor area, as well as the least amount of bleeding. FUE provides a natural appearance throughout the entire scalp. It is a minimally invasive procedure that leaves no visible scarring afterward. It provides the client with the ability to choose the type of hairstyle that he or she prefers to have.
Reasons for Having a Hair Transplant Surgical Procedure
- Hair loss candidates who have good quality hair at the back and sides of their scalps should be considered for this procedure.
- A man suffering from male pattern baldness
- Females who are experiencing hair thinning
- A customer who has experienced hair loss as a result of a scalp injury or burn
Candidates for Hair Transplant Surgery who are in good health
- In order for these locations to be used as donor sites, the candidate must have healthy hair growth on the sides and back of the scalp.
- Customers who have realistic expectations.
- Non-smokers who don’t meet the criteria for a hair transplant are considered unsuitable candidates.
Who Are Not A Good Candidate For Getting A Hair Transplant
- A customer who has very little hair
- A woman who has had hair loss in a pattern that is widespread throughout her scalp.
- Individuals who are prone to keloid development following surgery or injury.
- Loss of hair as a result of chemotherapy or certain drugs.
- Clients who do not have a sufficient number of donor hair sites.
Hair quality parameters such as texture, colour, curliness, and waviness of hair are also important in determining the outcome of a hair transplant.
Treatments and solutions are available.
1- Flap surgery
Involves the transfer of hair-bearing scalp tissue to a region where there is no hair. This treatment has been in use for over 20 years and is effective at covering huge bald regions quickly. The flap size is determined by the patient’s desired outcome and requirements. A single flap can replace the effort of more than 350 punch grafts in a single operation. This surgery involves the removal of a portion of bald scalp from the patient’s head. In order to avoid tearing the flap of the hair-bearing scalp area, it is peeled off while still attached to one end. The flap is then moved to its new position and stitched in place. The remainder is connected to the patient’s original blood supply through a catheter. As the healing process progresses, the scar is concealed by the hair that comes back where the incision was made. In order to get improved crown coverage, the flap procedure is performed in conjunction with scalp reduction. It is used in conjunction with tissue expansion in order to offer improved frontal covering.
2 – scalp reduction
Involves the surgical excision of bald patches and the advancement of the hair-bearing portions of the scalp together. This procedure is referred to as advanced flap surgery on a number of occasions. It is necessary to advance or pull forward the areas of the hair-bearing scalp during this treatment in order to fill in the bald crown. It is most commonly used to disguise the back and top of the head, however it is ineffective in concealing the front hairline. This procedure is the injection of local anaesthetic into the scalp, followed by the removal of the bald scalp region. The design of the part that is to be removed is determined by the patient’s desired outcome and requirement.
For example, if a substantial amount of coverage is required, the area to be deleted is done in an inverted Y shape pattern to conserve space. Excision can be performed in a variety of shapes, including pointed ovals, U shapes, and others. Immediately following removal, the skin that surrounds the cut area is pulled taut, and the hair-bearing scalp part is brought together and stitched back together. Following this operation, you may experience intermittent discomfort and a strong tugging sensation at the treated region that will subside with time.
3 – Tissue expansion
Enables the formation of hair-bearing scalp to cover the balding areas of the scalp. Most commonly, this treatment is performed on the scalp to repair injuries and burn wounds that have caused considerable skin loss in addition to hair loss. Expansion of the tissue has spectacular outcomes in a relatively short period of time.
An expander is placed beneath the hair-bearing part of the scalp that is next to the balding area in this method, and the tissue expander is stretched. The tissue expander is a balloon-like device that is filled with salt water and inflated over a period of several weeks. This causes the skin to expand, and new skin cells are produced as a result of this. When the skin beneath the hair-bearing portion of the scalp has extended enough, surgery is undertaken to expand the skin and cover the surrounding bald area. This procedure takes several weeks to complete.
4 – Hair transplantation –
In this procedure, a little piece of hair-bearing scalp is removed from the donor site (typically the side or back of the scalp) and transplanted to the area where there is baldness or thinning of the scalp. It is possible to have a hair transplant performed alone or in conjunction with other hair replacement procedures.
For those who want to see significant improvements, Surgical techniques such as tissue expansion, flaps, and scalp reduction are deemed acceptable. Hair transplantation procedures such as mini-grafts, punch grafts, slit grafts, strip grafts, and micrografts are indicated for those who only want a minor alteration in their appearance.
Precautions to Take Before Getting a Hair Transplant
- One week before the procedure, refrain from ingesting alcoholic beverages or nicotine-containing goods.
- You should avoid becoming sunburned on your scalp, so make sure you cover it up with a hat or scarf before going outside.
- Stop smoking at least a week before the surgery.
- It is possible that your doctor would recommend that you begin ingesting 1 grammar of vitamin C three times a day 14 days before the surgery in order to hasten the healing process.
- On the day of your hair transplant, you should wash your hair with a standard shampoo. Avoid the use of any type of hair gel, spray, or lotion on your hair.
- From one week before the surgery, avoid taking anti-inflammatory medications and herbal supplements that may raise the risk of bleeding.
- During the hair transplant procedure, the patient is kept in a clean and sterile procedure room. All of the surgical tools that will be used are sanitised, and the patient is provided with disposable clothing to wear throughout the procedure.
Technique The procedure for hair transplantation entails the removal of small punch grafts from the donor hair-bearing location, which are then chopped into little pieces that will be used as grafts in the recipient area. The grafts are then moved to the area of the scalp that is thinning or bald, and the procedure is repeated. The grafts that have been developed are available in the following forms and sizes:
This was the first type of graft to be utilised in hair transplantation, and it is still the most commonly used today. In order to obtain a large circular graft, at least 20 hairs must be extracted using various-sized punches.
There are several different types of mini-grafts that are created from round grafts, the most common of which is the mini-graft 1. One hair is contained within each small mini transplant and five to six hairs are contained within each large mini graft.
Micrografts are a type of hair transplant that contains 1-2 hairs in a single graft.
This phrase has taken the place of the earlier mini graft and refers to grafts that contain two or more follicular units in a single graft. MUGs are composed of 2-6 follicular units per graft.
These grafts can be inserted into a round and small slot or hole, or they can be placed into a large and small slot or hole.
In this procedure, the hair from the donor site is either retrieved straight from the donor site or is sectioned from a larger round graft and then inserted into a slit in the scalp that has been formed by the tip of a scalpel blade. It comprises between 4 and 10 hairs per graft.
6 – strip graft
which has approximately 30-40 hairs per graft that are thin and long.
Before the surgery, the donor site is cut to make it easier to reach the transplant and remove it after it has been placed. Punch grafts are performed with a special tube-like device made of sharp carbon steel that is used to punch holes in the skin. This device punches spherical grafts from the donor site and puts them in place of the spot that is to be covered (often the front line of the scalp). Another type of transplant involves the removal of the little hair-bearing area of the donor site with a knife in other cases. The piece is then further broken into tiny sections, which are subsequently transplanted into slits or holes in the balding or hair thinning area of the scalp, where they will eventually grow.
While the graft is being prepared, a saline solution is injected into the skin at regular intervals to keep it strong. Sutures are used to close the donor slits or holes after they have been closed. In the case of punch grafts, only one stitch is required. Other types of grafts leave a straight line and a minor scar in their place. The stitches are effectively hidden by the surrounding hair.
In order to achieve excellent results, a hair transplant procedure is performed in numerous sessions. It is recommended that you wait several months between sessions to let your body recuperate. It is possible that the ultimate outcome will take up to two years. The grafts are typically spaced one-eighth inch apart to ensure that the scalp has adequate circulation to it. Later procedures will involve the placement of additional grafts to fill in the gaps between the plugs.
What Should I Expect As A Result?
The extent and intricacy of your operation will determine how you feel following a hair transplant. After scalp surgery, scalp discomfort, strain, and throbbing is usual. Your doctor will prescribe pain medications to ease your discomfort. The other day, the bandages utilised will be removed. Stitches will be removed within 7-10 days. In order to lower the risk of infection, antibiotics are recommended. The transplanted hair may fall two or three weeks following the treatment to produce fresh hair growth. You will observe 60 percent new hair growth in 6-9 months. To increase hair growth and slow hair decrease, your doctor prescribes medicines for hair growth. In the transplanted area of the scalp, hair growth will continue. New hair quality depends on the suppleness of the scalp, follicle density, hair quality and hair curling. In untreated areas, hair loss may occur.
During follow-up, you may need touch-ups to provide a natural look following the incision. Touch up comprises the blending or filling of the hairline with tiny grafts.
Hair Transplant Precautions
The following measures must be taken after a hair transplant has been completed:
- Avoid drinking alcohol for three days after surgery
- Avoid smoking a week after the operation
- Sleep with pillows in a high head position.
- Do not take the first 48 hours of blood-thinning drugs.
- Don’t wear a tight cap that can rub the graft.
- Prefer a few weeks after the procedure to wear button-down garments.
- Avoid sports contact.
- Evitate to sleep on your face.
- Avoid hard work three weeks after surgery.
- Shampoo your scalp on the fourth day after hair restoration. After 2-3 weeks, resume regular shampooing and hair care.
- Cover your head with a scarf or hat for the first three weeks before you venture out in the sun.
- Without consulting your doctor, do not use any medicinal shampoo or ointment.