Sunday 24 March 2019

Dear doctor: Should I encourage my husband to get a hair transplant?

"From what I've heard, it's not that invasive. Am I right?" Stock photo
Dr Jennifer Grant, a GP with the Beacon HealthCheck screening programme at Beacon Hospital.

Dr Jennifer Grant

Dear Doctor

My husband is getting more and more self-conscious about the bald patch on his head. He's 57 so it's totally normal! But it bothers him so much I've been researching hair transplant treatments. He's scared it's too dangerous but, from what I've heard, it's not that invasive. Am I right?

A: Treatments for androgenic alopecia in men include topical such as steroids or minoxidil 5pc solution, and oral medications such as finasteride, which inhibits the conversion of testosterone to DHT.

Hair transplantation or plugging of hair follicles from the back of the scalp to the front is very safe and effective when performed by a skilled pair of hands (i.e. a hair restoration surgeon). As with any surgical procedure, there are the obvious risks of infection, bleeding, scarring and adverse reaction to anaesthesia.

Hair transplantation generally takes five to eight hours depending on which technique is used.

Anything from 800 to 6,000 grafts of follicular units can be transplanted. Generally the topical and oral medication mentioned already is continued post-procedure as the remaining loose non-transplanted hairs within the susceptible area still need treatment.


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