One of the most common questions we get at Maxim Hair Restoration is “Am I a good candidate for hair transplant surgery?” Well, there are definitely a number of factors that help determine a patient’s candidacy, such as overall health, hair and scalp color, number of hair follicles, shape and thickness of your hair, and even the flexibility of your scalp.
Unfortunately, none of us as humans are perfect, and we tend to take our youth and health for granted sometimes. Most of us assume that we are invincible, that we would never get sick, and in this case, that we will never lose our hair; and that those of us with thick full heads of hair think it will stay that way for the rest of our lives.
The truth is, many people will experience hair loss due to a variety of factors, whether from genetics, aging, hormones, or other lifestyle factors, during their lifetime. Research shows that an estimated 30 million women and as many as 50 million men will experience hair loss. For men, it is called male-patterned baldness (MPB). Women can also experience patterned baldness, but it is more common among men.
Fortunately, we are always looking towards new technological and scientific advances in the medical field, including for hair loss. These medical advancements have given people suffering from severe hair loss (alopecia), especially genetic hair loss, new found hope, especially with the advent of hair transplant surgery. Hair transplant surgery restores lost hair, allowing people to regain their youthful appearance, confidence, and not feel embarrassed or ashamed anymore to show who they truly are.
Donor hair density is one of the important factors a doctor will examine and consider when making their decision, if you are a good hair transplant candidate. The density is measured by how many follicular units (FU´s) there are per cm². FU´s are natural groupings of hairs. Doing a physical examination is needed for the physician to determine if you are a candidate for hair transplant surgery. Using magnified images of a patient’s donor hair, a physician can determine the number of fine and miniaturized donor hairs available. Patients with 25 percent or more of their donor hair in miniaturized form are great candidates for hair transplantation.
Therefore, the higher the number of miniaturized hairs present in the donor area, the more a person is a candidate for a hair transplant. As well, the less contrast there is between hair and scalp color, the better a candidate you will be for a hair transplant, as there will be increased potential for better coverage, decreasing your chance that the procedure will fail.
To find out if hair transplant surgery is right for you, there are a number of factors that influence your candidacy. You and your physician will set up a consultation to examine you, and determine your best options. Your physician will explain the pros and cons of the different treatment options available, and you will be able to ask as many questions as you want, in order to gain a clear understanding of the hair transplant procedure. This will help you and your consulting physician make the appropriate determination of what is best for your specific situation, as everyone is different.
During the hair transplant consultation, the doctor will determine if you are a candidate for the hair transplant procedure, by checking the thickness of your hair (density), specifically of the donor hair and the softness (laxity) of the scalp. When an individual has high donor density, the hair follicles, where the hair comes out from, or follicular units, signifies that it usually contains multiple hairs. Low donor density means they your follicular units usually contains only one hair. If it turns out that the individual has a very loose or soft scalp, if they are a candidate for the transplant procedure, a larger donor strip of hair can be removed, whereas, someone with a tighter scalp, means only a thin donor strip will be possible to remove.
If it is determined that you are a good candidate for a hair transplant procedure, a plan is constructed with the goal of achieving the best possible hair restoration for you, taking into account balding pattern, how much donor hair is available, etc. The plan may call for one or several hair transplant surgeries, as everyone is different.
Around for over 60 years, hair transplantation surgery has been helping people suffering from hair loss to regain confidence and self-esteem. Traditional hair transplantation, also known as Follicular Unit Transplant (FUT), involves removing a narrow strip of hair from another area of the head called a donor site, commonly the back of the head; then, transplanting these hair follicles onto the areas where the hair is balding or thinning.
The hormone Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is responsible for why people progressively lose their hair. During a hair transplant, the hair follicles taken from the donor site are resistant to the DHT hormone, and therefore, when transplanted into the desired area, these follicles will continue to grow naturally, and not fall out.
The hair transplant procedure is typically performed under local anesthesia, making it a fairly simple outpatient procedure. Depending on the extent of hair loss, and the amount of grafts that were transplanted, the procedure can take anywhere from four to eight hours. There may be swelling and bleeding after the procedure, and patients may experience inflammation around the new hair follicles growing in, that can be controlled with medication and cold compresses.
To learn if you are a candidate for a hair transplant, Contact MAXiM today for a consultation.