Even though surgical hair restoration is a minimally-invasive procedure, many patients still feel a sense of nervousness before they come in for treatment. Your doctor will likely give you a list of steps to follow before and after your hair transplant treatment, but there are a few steps that you can take that can set your nerves at ease. For a relatively uncomplicated procedure, keep the following in mind:
Things to Consider Before Hair Transplant Surgery
Have Realistic Expectations
Keep in mind that nothing is 100% guaranteed and even if you have the most technically skilled surgical team working on your operation, things can still go wrong and mistakes can be made. Failing that, sometimes even when everything goes perfectly, it might turn out that hair implantation is simply not an effective course of action in your specific case. The fact is that not every type of hair loss treatment will work the same way for everyone. Do not expect it to be an overnight quick fix to a long-term problem. While hair restoration surgery is permanent, the results vary vastly from one individual to another. Make sure you do your research thoroughly to mentally and financially prepare yourself for this procedure and a potentially lengthy recovery period.
It is wise to inform your employer, family members, and friends that you are undergoing this procedure because you may need to book extended time off of work to recover. This can vary anywhere from three to seven days or more depending on the patient. You will also need to arrange for transportation home after the surgery ahead of time. Follow-up appointments will be scheduled in the coming weeks and months, so it is advisable that you inform your employer well ahead of time that you may need to book time off in the future as well. Additional procedures might also be necessary.
This next point is absolutely crucial in your hair transplant surgeon selection process: do not be afraid to ask about your doctor’s level of experience. Question how long they have been working in their medical field, how many degrees they have, what kinds of certifications they hold, how long they have been performing hair implantations as well as how many estimated procedures they have performed, and whether they keep themselves well informed and up to date on the latest news and advancements in the industry.
It is even relevant to ask about their level of involvement in the hair transplant medical community and whether they are involved in any committees of their peers. These questions may appear to be inconsequential on the surface, but all of these factors are good indications of how dedicated your surgeon is to their craft. Your hair transplant surgeon should be more than willing to make themselves available to meet with you at least for the initial consultation so that they can personally address all of your questions and concerns to your satisfaction.
Try to see if you can get a referral from a trusted friend or family member who has personally undergone this procedure successfully and also take it upon yourself to read as many online reviews as possible. Follow any means necessary to ensure you are choosing a reputable and highly skilled hair transplant surgeon.
Potential Side Effects and Risks
As with any medical and surgical procedure, there are some risks and side effects associated with a hair transplant. These include the following:
- Death of the hair follicle—when this happens, it is impossible for new hair to grow in the affected area.
- Two to three weeks following the procedure, your hair will either mostly or completely fall out. This is a completely normal part of the healing process and it will grow back in the coming months.
- Your new hair might be thin and frail in the first little while, but eventually it should return to its normal quality of thickness and colour.
- Initially, your hair pattern might be patchy, but it should return to normal after a few months. If it does not improve, then you may need to have multiple procedures done.
- If your scalp becomes infected, you should consult your physician right away so that they can examine the issue and provide the appropriate remedy.
- Scarring and swelling are typical occurrences within the first few months.
Hair Transplant Procedures
There are two main types of hair transplant procedures that are specifically formulated to treat hair loss:
- Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE): This is a very intricate and precise procedure that involves extracting hair follicles one-by-one from the patient’s donor area and relocating and transplanting them to the area that is devoid of hair growth.
- Follicular Unit Transplant (FUT): This is the less popular choice as it is aptly known as the “strip” method. It involves extracting an entire patch of skin or graft from the donor area of the scalp and transplanting it to the area that is devoid of hair growth.
Physicians usually advise which method would work best for individual patients following an extensive consultation, but ultimately, the decision is up to you.
It is extremely wise to inform your hair restoration surgeon of any medications you are taking prior to the procedure. Because some of these medications could adversely interact with the local anesthesia that might be used, your surgeon may advise you to stop taking certain medications a few weeks before the surgery. They will also advise you not to take Aspirin a few weeks prior to and after the procedure because it contains active medical ingredients that can cause or exacerbate swelling.
Hair Transplant Cost
The cost of the hair transplant depends on a few different factors:
- How complicated the procedure is
- How much hair is being transplanted at one time
- How many surgeries and consultations will be required
- The length of each procedure, if there are more than one
- What kinds of medications are prescribed
- Whether anesthesia is used
It is advisable to acquire estimates from at least two to three different hair loss clinics and have them each schedule a free consultation to assess your condition.
Location: Find a Hair Transplant Clinic in Your Area
Since it may be necessary for you to undergo multiple hair loss treatments, you should try to find a hair transplant clinic near you. This will make it more convenient for you to go back on a regular basis and the clinic will keep a patient history file of your treatment. Hair transplantation in Toronto does not have to be an arduous experience because there are many reputable and professional clinics that would be more than happy to serve you.
Prior to the Hair Transplant Treatment
- Since you will need to take time off following the procedure, be sure to let your family, friends and employer know that you’ll be unavailable for anywhere from two to four days.
- Seven days before your hair transplant treatment, avoid consumption of alcohol, vitamins and medications such as minoxidil—an ingredient found in Rogaine. It is strongly recommended that you check with your physician to see if any medications you are on will cause an adverse reaction to the hair transplant surgery. Furthermore, fill any prescriptions for pain medication before you undergo the procedure.
- It is strongly recommended that you avoid eating or drinking anything after midnight the night prior to your surgery. Do an activity that you find relaxing the day before the procedure to calm any last-minute nerves. Finally—get a good night’s sleep!
Morning of the Hair Surgery
- Thoroughly wash your hair before you leave in the morning. The doctor will advise you of any special shampoos you may need to use.
- Arrive at the clinic early so you won’t feel rushed before you go in for surgery. This will also allow the doctor to take his/her time, explain the procedure to you in further detail and answer any last-minute questions you may have.
- Wear a button-down shirt that you can easily take on and off.
Once the procedure is complete, don’t return to work or regular activities until you feel you are able to. Recovery time varies from patient to patient— it can take anywhere from two days to two weeks or longer.
To reduce swelling, take pain medication as prescribed and sleep with your head at a 45 degree angle.
Trust the Leaders in Surgical Hair Transplant Treatments
As the leading provider of surgical hair transplant treatments, The Canadian Institute of Hair and Scalp Specialists will take the time to explain the procedure to you and answer any questions you may have. Our Mississauga location welcomes everyone from local to foreign clients. We have served hundreds of patrons from as central as the GTA to as far as Europe and South Asia. Our experience allows for efficient and safe procedures to be completed with lower costs to our customers. We’re conveniently located near the airport and hotel accommodations; you can complete your out-patient surgery and then check into a local, reasonably-priced hotel—without the irritation of going to a downtown clinic.
Our team of experts will provide you with everything you need to know for aftercare following the hair transplant surgery. Contact us for a risk-free, no-obligation consultation.