Hair Grafting in Vestavia Hills - Birmingham, AL
According to the American Hair Loss Association, by the age of 35, over 60% of men will experience some degree of hair loss, and by the age of 50, up to 85% of men have significantly thinning hair. In women—particularly menopausal women—hair loss also occurs; in fact, hair loss is much more than a disease only affecting men. Women make up 40% of hair loss sufferers.
In both men and women, any degree of hair loss can be a source of embarrassment that leads hair loss sufferers to seek hair restoration through invasive and non-invasive means. A popular hair loss treatment frequently elected by these men and women is hair grafting.
In horticulture, grafting is the process of inserting a shoot or twig into a slit on a trunk or stem of a living plant. The process is not much different in treating hair loss. A graft is a section of living tissue that is transplanted into the scalp. Hair transplant surgery—or hair grafting—involves removing living hair follicles from the back of your head and inserting those hair follicles into multiple tiny slits on parts of your scalp where you have no hair.
If you are experiencing hair loss and are considering hair grafting to spark new hair growth, meet with a qualified healthcare professional in Vestavia Hills - Birmingham that can discuss your hair restoration options with you. Call (205) 386-9036 or contact BodylogicMD of Birmingham online.
What to Expect from Your Hair Restoration Procedure
Hair grafting is an outpatient procedure usually performed in the office of your healthcare provider. Sedation is available; however, you will need to arrange transportation home. For the actual procedure, your healthcare provider will clean your scalp and inject a local anesthetic.
There are two main methods to "harvest" hair follicles: FUSS or FUE.
- Follicular Unit Strip Surgery (FUSS): If the FUSS method is elected, your healthcare provider will remove 5-10 inches of skin from the back of your head, set it aside and sew the scalp closed. Taking the strip of skin removed, your healthcare provider will divide the strip into hundreds to thousands of tiny grafts. Each graft will have a few hairs.
- Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE): If the FUE method is elected, rather than removing any skin, your healthcare provider will shave a portion of the back of your scalp and remove hair follicles one-by-one, directly from the scalp. The removal causes tiny wounds to develop which can heal on their own and will be covered by existing hair.
In both methods of follicular extraction, your existing hair will normally be sufficient to cloak the healing wounds and/or scarring. The surgery then involves "planting" the hair grafts on the area of your scalp where you are experiencing baldness or hair loss. Small slits are made with a scalpel or needle, and hair grafts are delicately placed inside. Micro-grafts contain 1-2 hairs per graft, slit grafts 4-10 and punch grafts from 10-15 hairs.
With each procedure, anywhere from 100 to 1,000 hair-bearing segments may be transplanted. The treatment can take from 4 to 8 hours, depending on the methodology chosen and the number of hair grafts being performed. Having 3-4 procedures to fully restore normal hair fullness may be necessary.
Hair Grafting Recovery & Results
Your scalp may be very sensitive or tender following the procedure. You may have to wear bandages for the first few days and your healthcare provider may recommend pain medication, antibiotics or anti-inflammatory drugs for several days.
Side effects of the procedure may include:
- Numbness or decreased sensation in scalp where follicles were removed or inserted
- Swelling or bruising of scalp or around eyes
- Infected incisions
- Crusting where follicles were removed or inserted
In the first month, you should not be alarmed when the transplanted hair and/or any small amounts of hair that remained in the area begin to fall out. This is called "shock loss" and is usually not permanent. You should start to notice new hair growth within the first few months. Most people experience a 60% increase in new hair growth 9 months post-treatment, but results may vary.
Who is a Good Candidate for Hair Restoration?
The best candidates for hair transplant surgery are men with male-pattern baldness and women with thinning hair. Hair loss due to burns or injuries to the scalp may respond to hair grafts but it depends on the nature and severity of the injury.
It is important to understand that not everyone is a good candidate for hair transplant surgery. Hair grafts are not recommended in the following cases:
- If your hair loss is a response to medication you are taking (e.g., blood pressure medications, chemotherapy, birth control pills, etc.)
- If you have insufficient sections of healthy hair-growth to support removal of hair follicles or skin with follicles
- If your hair growth is inhibited by a medical condition like thyroid disease, infection, hormonal imbalance or skin conditions
- If you are a female with widespread pattern baldness
- If you are known to form keloid scarring or thick, fibrous scar tissues in response to burns, radiation or trauma
Hair loss can be reversed. Call and learn more about hair replacement through a hair grafting procedure today. Call (205) 386-9036 or contact BodylogicMD of Birmingham online.
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