At The Hair Ambulance, we’re delighted to be working with one of the UK’s leading hair restoration specialists. Dr Ganesh Krishnan has trained with the world’s finest hair transplant experts and can also prescribe Hair Loss pharmaceutical options – he can offer expert, unbiased advice on whether a hair transplant is the best option for you.
What is a hair transplant?
The most commonly used hair transplant technique used today is Follicular Unit Extraction or FUE. This method involves harvesting hair follicles from a donor site where hair growth is strong – usually at the back of the head – and replanting them in areas of thinning hair.
This method differs from the traditional ‘strip transplant’ method in that it leaves minimal scarring. With a strip transplant, a whole section of the scalp is removed in order to harvest the follicles, which can leave an unsightly scar in the donor area.
The FUE method harvests follicles one by one using a specialised instrument between 0.8mm to 1mm in diameter.
Up to 2,000 follicles at a time can be safely transplanted using this technique in the UK. The number of grafts that can be done in one session continues to increase every year due to improvements in instrumentation and techniques. Today, some patients can actually get 5,000 grafts moved from a dense donor area to a large bald area. The average large session is 2,500.
How does a hair transplant procedure work?
A FUE hair transplant is performed under local anaesthetic, so you are awake for the entire procedure. Typically, but not in every case, hair in the donor site will need to be shaved prior to the surgery – some patients prefer to shave their whole head in order to minimise the aesthetic impact of this.
Once the anaesthetic has taken effect, you will feel no discomfort throughout the procedure. The surgery itself can take some time, depending on how many follicles are being transferred. If you opt for the maximum number of follicles transplanted in one procedure, the operation could take most of a day.
How long will it take to recover from a FUE hair transplant?
Unlike the traditional strip transplant technique, which had a recovery time of several weeks, patients have usually recovered from a FUE transplant within seven days of surgery.
In fact, whilst there may be some initial bleeding, you can expect to leave the clinic within half an hour of surgery being completed.
What kind of results can I expect?
The results of a FUE transplant are usually very natural looking, with the transplanted follicles behaving exactly like your natural hair. This is due to the precise method with which the follicles are transplanted.
The transplanted follicles can be quite vulnerable in the initial few days after surgery – your surgeon will provide you with aftercare instructions to ensure that you get the best possible results from your hair transplant procedure.
Once the initial recovery period is over and follicles have taken root in the scalp, you can expect the hair to grow as normal.
Who is a suitable candidate for a hair transplant?
Hair transplants are not suitable for everyone – that’s why it is so important to gain impartial advice before signing on the dotted line.
Generally, hair transplants work best on those suffering from male pattern hair loss, where there is still a lot of hair at the back and sides of the head. However, hair transplants for women are also an option in some cases, and the procedure can be used to treat other causes of hair loss.
If you are interested in the hair transplant procedure but are unsure whether you are a suitable candidate, why not contact us to book a consultation with one of our hair loss experts.