The vast majority of patients find that hair transplant procedures are extremely successful. The team will help patients maintain realistic expectations, which is the key to avoiding disappointment. It is impossible to create a thick, full head of hair in an individual who has experienced a large area of balding. Realistic expectations and following the guidelines of the surgical team should ensure a successful hair transplant experience.
There are a number of disadvantages to hair transplant surgeries. It is important that all patients weigh the risks of hair transplant procedures against the benefits. Ultimately, there is minimal medical risk associated with the surgeries. This means that while disadvantages do exist, they are generally not negative enough for patients to not go ahead with the procedures. However, an important part of the process is a thorough discussion of the risks and benefits of what is ultimately a non-essential surgical procedure.
Bleeding or Infection: Patients who follow the advice and recommendations of the surgical team are unlikely to experience either of these medical risks. However, if an infection or excess bleeding does occur, simple treatment options are available.
Nerve Damage: Nerve damage is most common in surgeries which remove a portion of the scalp (such as FUT), however some temporary numbness can also be experienced following an FUE procedure.
Scarring is another potential disadvantage of hair transplant procedures. Although scarring is usually minimal, there is always the chance of improper healing or noticeable scars. The scars associated with FUE procedures are small dots or bumps at follicular insertion sites. Procedures usually result in thin scars at the follicular insertion sites and a 1 millimetre scar at the donor site. These scars are generally difficult to detect, but may become visible if patients choose to shave the hair very short.
Hair Loss can be experienced after transplant surgeries in the rarest of cases. Sometimes this is simply shedding, which means that the hair will grow back in a month or two. It is possible, however, for a percentage of transplanted hairs to die and fall out.
The risks associated with transplant procedures are extremely low, approximately 2%-10% of transplanted hairs do not survive the procedure.
Decreased sensitivity is another possible side effect within the first few months after surgery. Most patients regain full sensation in the scalp within one year of the surgery.
Patients may also experience crusting around the grafted follicles. This is completely normal and the crusts will fall off on their own around a week after surgery. It is important that patients refrain from picking at the crusted area. Picking could result in the removal of grafts.