Like any surgery, hair transplant can be an amazing process, but it also comes with some risks. Let’s look at the pros and cons.
Prior to any surgery, our specialized surgeons always make sure that patients are fully aware of all the benefits and risks that are associated with their surgery. Hair restoration is no exception. There are two different types of hair transplant surgeries. The strip-method (Follicular Unit Transplantation, FUT) and NeoGraft (Follicular Unit Extraction, FUE). Hair restoration is a surgical procedure that does have more life changing benefits than not, but there can be complications and here is what we want you to know.
Pros and Cons of Hair Transplant Surgery
Benefits of (F.U.T) or “The Strip-Method”
The strip-method gets its name because donor hair follicles are obtained from a strip of hair that is excised from the back of the patient’s scalp. One of the advantages to this method is that the hair is taken from healthy tissue that maximizes follicular unit growth, making it extremely successful.
Another advantage to this technique is the length and cost of the procedure. FUT is typically shorter and less expensive than the FUE technique. However, both techniques provide the patient with extremely natural results.
Risks of The Strip-Method
Risks that are involved with most surgeries including hair transplant are risk of bleeding, infection, and scarring. These risks are rare but should most definitely be taken seriously. There are a few disadvantages to this method that include more healing time and a linear scar on the back of the scalp. The scar is a result of the strip of skin that is excised to obtain the follicular units. This scar can easily be covered by slightly longer hair. Patients who choose the method will have dissolvable sutures in for about 1-2 weeks and may experience temporary numbness where the donor’s hair is harvested.
Benefits of “NeoGraft” or F.U.E Method
NeoGraft has a 98% follicle survival rate on average, meaning the quality of grafts is greater. The survival rate is high because NeoGraft utilizes a vacuum-like suction to extract and implant follicles, which is less likely to injure any follicles and allows for quicker re-implantation. This also means no cutting and no sutures, which means a quicker recovery.
The FUE method is ideal for candidates who prefer to wear their hair short because there is little to no visible scarring.
Risks of NeoGraft or F.U.E
Although the likelihood of compilations occurring is low, there is still the risk of bleeding, infection, and scarring. The risk of complications is much lower than the strip-method because the FUE procedure doesn’t involve cutting along the back of the scalp, and no staples or sutures. With that being said, the recovery time is very minimal. Low graft survival rate or “shock loss” are other risks following hair transplant surgery. Shock loss occurs when there is trauma to the surrounding hair follicles and may result in permanent hair loss.
The real risk with either the FUT or FUE method, is with an inexperienced surgeon or team. To avoid unnatural results or jeopardize the success rate of either procedure, research and consult with a specialized hair restoration surgeon who works with experienced technicians as well.
For natural, long-lasting results, carefully select a board-certified plastic surgeon experienced in both FUT and FUE hair transplant surgery.
The Disadvantages and Cons of Hair Transplant Surgery
While hair transplant surgery can be an effective solution for restoring hair growth, it also has some disadvantages. Here are some potential drawbacks associated with hair transplant surgery:
- Cost: Hair transplant surgery can be expensive, especially if multiple sessions are required. The cost may vary depending on factors such as the extent of hair loss, the desired density, and the clinic or surgeon chosen.
- Surgical Risks: Like any surgical procedure, hair transplant surgery carries certain risks. These can include bleeding, infection, scarring, numbness or lack of sensation in the treated area, and adverse reactions to anesthesia. While complications are rare, they can occur.
- Healing and Recovery: After a hair transplant, the scalp may experience swelling, redness, and discomfort, which can take a few days or weeks to subside. There may be a healing process involved, during which the transplanted hair falls out before new hair growth begins.
- Limited Donor Supply: Hair transplants rely on the availability of healthy hair follicles from the donor area (typically the back or sides of the scalp). In cases of extensive hair loss or inadequate donor supply, it may be challenging to achieve satisfactory results.
- Additional Sessions: Achieving desired results may require multiple hair transplant sessions, especially for individuals with significant hair loss or a desire for higher density. Each session can involve additional costs and recovery time.
It’s important to consult with a qualified and experienced hair transplant surgeon like our surgeons here to fully understand the potential risks, benefits, and limitations of the procedure, as well as to determine if it’s the right option for your specific situation.
For more information about hair restoration, hair loss, or hair transplant options please contact the Draper or Layton, Utah Hair Restoration office at 801-776-2220.