Recovery After Hair Transplant

In the present age, due to several environmental, genetic, and other factors, hair loss is a significant complaint. For this reason, many people are opting for hair transplantation. It can be a big step to undergo transplantation surgery, but the prevalence of hair transplantation surgery is increasing day by day.

Hair transplantation surgery might appear to be major surgery, but in reality, this procedure is a minimally invasive procedure which has fewer complications and pain complaints if done by some authentic and expert professional.

Most commonly used technique for hair transplantation is FUE (follicular unit extraction) in which the doctor removes follicular units from the scalp of the patient using an instrument of one-millimetre size. With the help of this instrument, the surgeon makes a circular incision around the area of follicular units for isolation of the graft. This isolated graft is then directly extracted from the patient’s scalp using an instrument and is then prepared for further placements.

These grafts are kept in optimal condition using specially trained techniques to prepare, isolate, and work using stereo microscopes (high-powered). These follicles are then arranged into groups depending upon the hair present within each follicle.

FUE hair transplant technique is a proven, minimally invasive procedure in which grafts are taken/extracted from stronger scalp areas to restore the thinning of other areas. This technique is one of the most modern techniques which delivers excellent results in the shortest time of recovery. Unlike the other methods of hair transplants as Follicular unit transplantation (FUT), there is no risk and fewer worries about scarring following the procedure.

Recovery time for the FUE procedure:

Every surgery requires some time to heal properly. Same is the case with hair transplant surgery. Although the procedure of FUE transplantation reduces discomfort and scarring, it is still essential to keep in your mind that your hair follicles have been removed from one area of your scalp and are transplanted to somewhere else. Temporary side-effects might be present post-op, which will tend to decrease and eventually disappear after some time as the graft inclines towards healing.

Immediate post-op appearance:

Immediately after the procedure, an individual who has undergone the procedure will be able to see the new hairline shape as the new follicles are implanted at a new position. However, this appearance won’t be appealing in appearance as the scalp will be scabby around the areas of follicles. In this procedure, as all the incisions made are of the size of about a millimetre. Therefore, these scabs will tend to be small and capable of healing quicker than other treatments.

Swelling:

Swelling can appear at the donor site because of invasion. These side effects will be temporary and can resolve within a few days post-op. In case of other techniques as FUT, these side-effects can persist longer even for the months and may cause numbness at the donor site.

Tenderness:

Post graft transplantation, soreness or some tenderness (sensitivity to touch), and swelling of the forehead can also persist which will tend to diminish within a few days, and the individual will be able to return to routine activities and work.

Folliculitis:

Right after the transplant surgery, folliculitis known as inflammation and infection of hair follicles can occur, which can be resolved and compressed by the prescription of antibiotics by your surgeon.

Precautions:

Your surgeon might advise you about some precautionary measures for the best care and excellent prognosis of your procedure. These precautions might include:

  • Restriction of hair wash and showering for a few days post-op
  • Elevation of your head while doing activities and sleeping
  • Please don’t go back to work right away after the procedure, there is no proper reason to avoid it, but it is a realistic approach to wait for some time before going back to normal life
  • Avoid exercise routine in the first-week post-op and ask your surgeon before continuing the practice of the exercises.

By following the precautionary guidelines and recommendations advised by the surgeon, you will be able to settle down with your surgical procedure within 5 to 7 days post-op.

After two weeks of post-op, the patient might see hair falling out of the follicles, which can be a horrifying experience for a patient. At this stage, there isn’t anything to worry about as this is normal for the hair to come out of follicles in FUE hair transplant technique and doesn’t mean that the grafts haven’t been placed accurately.

Naturally, when the follicle is moved from one place to another as in FUE, it tends to cease the hair growth until it settles back to its new position. It is a natural process for old hair to fall out and make a place for new hair to come out of new hair follicles which form a cycle of hair growth.

At natural pace, hair tends to grow at 1cm length per month. Your transplant results might take some time to become apparent, and you start getting the desired results. Your final appearance can become fully apparent within the time of 4 to 5 months post-op, and it may even take time as long as more than 18 months to become fully visible.

Depending upon the weather and time of the season in which you underwent the transplant surgery, the surgeon will recommend you to use hats or use specific sunscreens with high factor for protection for a few early weeks post-op.

Once the time has passed and you have correctly followed the preventive guidelines, the new hairline will be established, and you will be able to see the normally growing, and healthy hair at the site of your transplant. At this point, you will be able to treat your all hair the same. You will be allowed to comb the way you want, trim them, and even dye them as per your wish.

FUE procedure is a permanent transplant technique which gives a life-long result. It will be challenging to recognise that you ever underwent transplant surgery after one-two years of transplant, which will let you have any choice of hairstyles.

Platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRP) is a therapy required to stimulate the growth of hair after FUE transplant. This therapy helps in the stimulation of hair follicles to maximise their hair growth and regeneration.

PRP therapy is done by extracting plasma rich blood from your body in a centrifuge and is then injected to the area of transplant in the scalp where the growth of hair was thinnest, previously.

According to the clinical evidence, PRP therapy helps in the release of cytokines and other growth-related factors which are released from platelets introduced into the affected area.

Other several re-vitalising shampoos for follicle stimulation can be used for the reactivation of transplanted hair follicles. Laser, vitamin therapies, and other techniques can be used to treat the hair loss and hair thinning, which will encourage the grafted follicles to start the growth of hair again. Always refer to your surgeon for the advice of product choice and use of these products according to individual needs.

Conclusion:

FUE transplantation is one of the most innovative techniques used for hair transplantation which is thought to be the minimally invasive procedure with the less risk of complications. However, it takes some time for the full visibility of results after the procedure by the proper care and following of precautionary guidelines advised by the surgeons and doctors.