The existing medical options for reversing hair loss in patients suffering from hereditary forms of hair loss are limited to relatively few treatments with most of them being only effective in the early stages of baldness. Once you have lost a substantial portion of hair due to hereditary factors or an accident, such as a burn, the only remaining option is to replace the missing hair. Your options can be either of a temporary nature, such as the use of hair systems and hair loss concealers, or a permanent surgical solution. Hair transplantation happens to be the most effective way of surgical hair replacement and the only permanent solution that offers satisfactory results.
Hair transplantation consists in transplanting patient's own hair from the back of his scalp to the frontal, balding area. The main limiting factor of hair transplantation is the shortage of donor hair and, therefore, many patients do not make a good candidate. The suitable hair transplant candidate should have a high hair density in the back of the scalp, his hair should be thick and wavy, his scalp flexible and the contrast between the colour of his hair and scalp should not be too great, and he must be in good physical condition. Women largely suffer from a diffuse form of hair loss and, therefore, do not make very good hair transplant candidates. Hair transplantation also cannot be performed on patients suffering from unpredictable forms of hair loss such as alopecia areata.
Given the chronic shortage in the supply of donor hair, the hair transplant surgeon must be able to utilise the little hair he can use to create the optical illusion of a full head of hair. This presents one of the biggest risks in hair transplantation, as it can every so often happen that the patient does not like the final result. Although you can usually arrange for another hair transplant session, some damage can be irreparable. Other risks and side effects occurring during and after hair surgery include excessive bleeding and scarring, the lengthy healing of wounds, the transaction and eventual death of many implanted hair follicles, post transplant shock hair loss, which, though temporary, can affect your newly-implanted hair as well the hair in the donor area, scalp numbness and tension and the further progression of hair loss post surgery, which can lead to unnatural patterns of baldness. In one recent study, which evaluated the experiences of 425 hair transplant patients who had undergone 533 hair transplant procedures in total, it was determined that about 5% of the patients experienced complications either during or after surgery.
Hair transplants can cost around ten thousand dollars, depending on the technique used, the location and reputation of the clinic, the extent of hair loss and the number of hair transplant sessions needed to achieve the eventual effect. However, sometimes it is impossible to estimate the final cost, which represents another risk you take when deciding on hair transplantation. Given the pain, time and cost involved, it pays to educate oneself prior to signing up for hair transplant surgery. The hair transplant industry is a fast-growing business and the quality and affordability of hair surgeries are improving, so do not let anybody push you into hasty uninformed decisions.
By Dody Gasparik M.Sc.
All rights reserved. Any reproducing of this article must have the author name and all the links intact.