By Dr. Manu Pratap Singh, Trichology
Thankfully, hair transplant surgery is almost always a permanent fixture, with a 95%-plus success rate.
After the completion of the procedure, in order to strengthen the transplanted hair follicles, a combination of propecia, laser hair therapy and Rogaine is recommended. This solidifies the transplanted hair follicles and helps in slowing down the loss of hair due to hair follicles that had not been transplanted. Once the hair that has been transplanted has transitioned from dormant to active phase, it should be permanent, given that it was harvested from the area behind the scalp which is generally hormone resistant. The harvesting areas, from which the hair follicles are taken, are not genetically programmed to lose hair. These areas are usually called ‘Safe Zones’.
The doctor usually informs the patient about his or her success rate. Usually, a mega session comprises of around 4000 grafts and it will most likely eliminate most of the current baldness. In case the baldness does not stop and no further action is taken to minimize further baldness, it might lead to new areas of baldness. A doctor should be consulted regarding the steps to be taken to prevent further baldness. One such step is to transplant hair to locations which are not yet bald but are capable of becoming bald in the future. Since there is only a finite amount of hair available, it is not advisable to conduct repeated surgeries.
The hair that has been transplanted will usually retain the properties of the donor hair, usually the colour and texture. It is possible that the transplanted hair becomes thin with time.
Maintenance & Hygiene-
1) Shampooing. Two days following surgery, gentle shampooing and scalp hygiene should be resumed to protect the transplanted follicles from bacterial infections. Properly shampooing the scalp will keep hard scabs from forming and will decrease the risk of lost transported follicles.
2) Cleaning. Use semi-permeable wound dressings to collect blood and tissue fluid from the miniature wounds. They should be changed once or twice daily as directed by a qualified physician.
3) General Protection. The scalp must be shielded from the sun and excessive temperatures. Newly-transplanted follicles may also fall out due to vigorous exercise.
If In Bad Luck …
Some poor individuals are afflicted with diffuse hair loss. Affecting small amount of men and a lot of women, diffuse hair loss is distributed throughout the entire scalp, leaving all areas bald or sparsely populated. Hair transplant surgery is incapable of remedying this problem. However, an old-fashioned toupee, ball cap or trendy piece of headwear may be just the thing to salvage your scalp.