Find local board certified plastic surgeons that specialize in plastic hair transplants
The process of hair transplantation involves relocating bald resistant hair follicles from the back and sides of the head to a person's bald or thinning areas. Because they are genetically resistant to going bald, the transplanted hair follicles will typically grow hair for a lifetime.
Since hair naturally grows in follicles that contain groupings of one to four hairs, today's most advanced techniques transplant naturally occurring "follicular units". Thus modern hair transplantation can achieve a natural appearance by mimicking nature hair for hair in a process coined "Follicular Unit Transplantation.
In recent years hair transplants have become less expensive. Hair transplant prices typically range from three to seven dollars per graft. Normally the price per graft also drops as the size of the surgical session increases.
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At the initial consultation, the surgeon will analyze your scalp, discuss your preferences and expectations and advises you on the best approach. For several days prior to surgery you will need to refrain from using any medicine or alcohol, which might result in intra-operative bleeding and, potentially, a poor "take" of the grafts. Often, pre-operative antibiotics are prescribed to prevent wound or graft infections.
Transplant operations are performed on an outpatient basis, with mild sedation and injected topical anesthesia. You can expect to be in surgery for up to four hours. Your scalp will be shampooed and treated with an antibacterial chemical. In the usual follicular unit procedure, the surgeon harvests a strip of skin from the posterior scalp, in an area of good hair growth. The excised strip is about 1-1.5 x 15-30 cm in size. While he is closing the resulting wound, assistants dissect individual follicular unit grafts from the strip. Working with binocular microscopes, they take great care to remove excess fibrous and fatty tissue without damaging the vital follicular cells that will produce your first crop of new hair.
The surgeon then uses a fine needle to puncture the sites for receiving the grafts, placing them in a predetermined density and pattern, and angling the wounds in a consistent fashion to promote a realistic hair pattern. Finally, individual grafts are put in place.
A good surgeon can place more than 70 grafts per square centimeter in order to get a appropriate density and appearance. In a "megasession", they may perform more prolonged surgeries, placing more than 2500-3000 grafts, in one sitting.
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After Hair Transplantation
A semi-permeable dressing, which allows seepage of blood and tissue fluid, will be applied. It will need to be changed daily. The vulnerable recipient area must be shielded from the sun and is not shampooed for about a week. During the first ten days, virtually all of the transplanted hairs, inevitably traumatized by their relocation, will fall out. This is called "shock loss". After two to three months new hair will begin to grow from the moved follicles. Your hair will grow normally and continue to thicken through the next six to nine months. Any subsequent hair loss is likely to be only from untreated areas. Some patients elect to use medications to retard such loss, while others plan a subsequent transplant procedure.