Skip to Content

Should I Get a Hair Transplant? | They Aren’t for Everyone!

If you’re experiencing balding, you may ask yourself, should I get a hair transplant? If you want to enter your late years with hair, you may want to consider undergoing hair transplant surgery. 

What Is a Hair Transplant?

Fue vs Fut transplant for a piece titled Should I Get a Hair Transplant

art4stock/Shutterstock

What exactly is a hair transplant? In short, a hair transplant is a surgical technique that involves removing hair follicles from one part of the body to a bald part of the body.

This procedure treats male pattern baldness and other hair loss. Hair transplants have been used to boost the confidence of men for years. In the 1930s, Japanese surgeons used small follicular unit grafts to replace damaged areas.

The first hair transplant procedure to treat male pattern baldness took place in 1952 by New York dermatologist Dr. Norma Orentreich. This procedure has its roots in skin grafting techniques used in the early 19th century.

Hair transplant procedures remove living hair follicles from the donor site by harvesting.

After the follicles are harvested, they are inserted into the skin at the recipient site. Hair transplants differ from skin grafts in that they do not contain all of the epidermis and dermis that surrounds the hair follicle. Instead, it is many tiny grafts of single hair follicles.

Without such a procedure, many men have experienced embarrassing balding. This procedure is minimally invasive and has proved to make a difference in the lives of many men.

While most hair transplant surgeries are done on men, some women enjoy the benefits. Women typically get hair transplants in the eyebrow area. Most men get a hair transplant on the scalp.

Is a Hair Transplant Safe?

Just like with any surgical procedure, it is important to research the safety of a hair transplant. Hair transplants are strictly cosmetic procedures.

Risking your life for a cosmetic reason does not make sense. Hair transplants are safe when performed by a qualified, experienced board-certified plastic surgeon. 

Risks

Hair transplants are typically safe, but they do come with risks. As with any other surgical procedure, one must be prepared when getting a hair transplant. Every person is different and reacts differently to specific chemicals and tools.

Notify your plastic surgeon of any metal or chemical allergies before proceeding with your surgery. The main concern comes in the recovery process.

Both the donor site and the recipient site will be sore and tender to the touch. Being soft with the affected area after undergoing a hair transplant surgery is important. Another risk is the affected area becoming infected. The procedure includes breaking the skin.

When the skin is broken, it allows certain bacteria to have a chance to enter the body. If not properly cleaned and cared for, the broken skin can become infected. Follow your plastic surgeon’s instructions carefully and clean the affected area routinely.

Because of the nature of the procedure, scarring can occur. Even though not life-threatening, scarring can be a nuisance. Talk to your doctor about how your skin scars before continuing with your hair transplant procedure.

Statistics

According to the Hair Society, 35 million men and 21 million women suffer from hair loss worldwide. Over 650,000 of them undergo hair transplant surgery as the most effective treatment option annually. 

One in thirteen men undergoes a hair transplant procedure to treat male pattern balding. Surgical hair restoration procedures have increased by 60% since 2014, according to ISHRS.

Of all of the people who undergo hair plantation, 87% of them are men. A person’s nationality also affects the rate of undergoing a hair transplant procedure. Asians choose to get a hair transplant procedure 38% more often than European patients. 

In 89% of male cases, surgeons transplant hair on the scalp, 4% on the beard, and 3% on the eyebrows. 

There are four factors that are affecting the surgical hair restoration market:

  • An increase in the number of people who suffer from baldness
  • The growing interest in self-care procedures in Asia
  • The development of minimally invasive and painless hair transplant techniques
  • Globally changing lifestyles

Great discoveries are being made in the hair transplant world due to high demand. New therapies are being worked on by doctors around the world to help solve hair loss and reduce risk.

Should You Get a Hair Transplant? That Depends.

Image showing whether you should get a hair transplant

Ruigsantos/Shutterstock

So you’re thinking about getting a hair transplant. Do they work? How long will it last? Is it worth all of the trouble? Most hair transplant procedures are successful. It all depends on the patient and the surgeon who did the surgery.

The success of hair transplantation also depends on the part of the body that is taking place. For example, if you’re trying to transplant hair to scarred skin, the hair follicle has less of a chance of surviving. The skin in a scar has less blood flow than other areas of the body.

This makes it more difficult for the hair to take root and survive. The eyebrows and mustache area are also places of lower blood supply.

If you’re getting a hair transplant in one of these areas, there is a higher chance that the hair follicle will die when compared to large blood supply areas. The scalp is a high blood supply area.

This makes hair transplantations that take place on the scalp very successful. Since this is where most people get a hair transplant, they have a high success rate.

Success Rate Statistics

Clinical studies show that 85-95% of all implanted grafts easily grow in the transplanted area. This is a very high success rate.

Most reputable surgeons say that hair transplantation is both an effective and promising option for patients coping with thinning hair or hair loss. With even more advancements in the world of dermatology, one can look forward to an even higher success rate.

Of the 650,000 patients who undergo hair transplant surgery, 552,500 to 617,500 of them are satisfied. They had successful hair transplantation and are enjoying a full head of hair, just like in their younger days.

Are They Permanent?

Hair transplantation takes hair from one part of the body and grafts it into another part of the body. This does not mean the hair in the recipient site is stuck there forever. Like with natural hair, transplanted hair can fall out due to different reasons.

An unhealthy diet, a high fever, or normal hair thinning can occur. In a sense, they are permanent if you consider the hair you already have as permanent.

No guarantee transplanted hair will last forever, but it will last as long as naturally grown hair in that area. There are sometimes cases of newly grafted hair not taking to the recipient site and dying and falling out.

This can be from a lack of blood supply, an unhealthy diet, and faulty placement. After you have a hair transplant, be sure and take care of your body with good nutrition, supplements, and exercise. This will give your new hair plenty of nutrients to grow full, thick, and healthy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Man who didn't wonder, "should I get a hair transplant" brushing his thick hair back

Fizkes/Shutterstock

How much does a hair transplant cost?

Hair transplants are not cheap. It depends on what clinic you go to for the exact price. Most clinics offer $2.00-$3.50 per graft. Each graft typically has two hair follicles. Most hair transplants use 2,000 grafts, costing between $4,000 and $7,000 for the procedure.

Can I get a hair transplant with a medical condition?

It all depends on your specific medical condition. Talk to your surgeon about your medical condition before beginning a hair transplant procedure. Patients with heart disease, kidney failure, liver failure, or diabetes may not be suitable to undergo a hair transplant surgery.

How many hair transplants are needed?

Typically only one hair transplant is needed. It depends on the patient’s degree of hair loss and desired goal of the transplant. If the patient has a high degree of hair loss and the desired goal of a thick, full head of hair, two or even three procedures may have to be done.

How long does a hair transplant last?

Because you are using your real hair, the hair from a transplant lasts as long as naturally grown hair in this area. Aging and medical conditions can cause hair loss after the hair transplant. Generally speaking, hair transplants last a lifetime.

Does a hair transplant leave scarring?

Patients that undergo a FUT Strip procedure will have a linear scar on the back of their head. The FUE hair transplant is undetectable and does not leave a line of scarring. After both kinds of procedures, the scalp will be sore and is at risk of getting infected. Proper care is required after both kinds of hair transplant surgery.

Does the hair transplant procedure hurt?

Due to the administration of anesthesia, there has been no pain reported during a hair transplant surgery. The scalp will be sore and tender to the touch after the procedure. It is not intense pain, and most patients say post-procedure medication is unnecessary.

So, Should You Get a Hair Tranplant?

A hair transplant is a good option for patients who are suffering from hair loss. The procedure consists of taking hair from one part of the body and putting it in another part. They have a high success rate and are revolutionizing the hair restoration market.