If your hair loss pattern doesn’t show signs of improvement, you may consider hair transplant surgery, but it’s not a decision you should take lightly, after all, it’s your look that’s on the line.
One thing you can do to maximize your chances for a successful hair transplant is to choose the right hair clinic and you can do that by doing a lot of research and asking questions.
There are some important questions you should ask a hair clinic before paying for their services, namely:
#1 Why use this hair clinic or surgeon in particular?
The most important decision you can take is to choose a reputable clinic and hair surgeon. You can research surgeons and clinics, read reviews, ask for before and after pictures of former patients.
You can start by looking for hair surgeons through the International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgeons or find reputable clinics on whatclinic.com or other similar websites.
#2 Should I try hair transplant alternatives first?
Yes, hair transplant is indicated after you exhaust all other treatment options. In fact, some treatments done prior to hair transplant surgery can improve its success rate.
For example, it’s recommended that patients start medical hair loss treatment a year before they get hair transplant surgery to slow down hair loss and stimulate the growth of new hair.
Currently, there are two efficient hair loss medications – Minoxidil and Finasteride. Minoxidil is an over-the-counter medication that’s applied topically, and it’s the active ingredient in Rogaine. Finasteride is a prescription drug that’s taken orally and it’s the active ingredient in Propecia.
Talk with your GP or hair specialist about which option is better for you.
#3 Which hair transplant procedure to get?
There are two main types of hair transplant – Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) and Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT).
The main difference between FUE and FUT is the way hair follicles are harvested. With FUE, hair follicles are harvested one-by-one, which leaves minimal scarring and recovery time is faster, while in the case of FUT, a hair strip is harvested from the back of the patient’s head. This procedure is cheaper and quicker, but there’s more extensive scarring and healing time.
Another option that’s popular among men who prefer shaved hairstyles is Advanced Trico Pigmentation (ATP), which uses a special long-lasting ink (lasts up to 7 years) to tattoo the scalp, offering the illusion of stubble.
#4 What are the costs of hair restoration?
Hair transplant surgery costs depend on the type of surgery and the number of hair follicles you need.
Of all the options ATP is the least expensive (between £1000 and £3000), followed by FUT (costs between £5000 and £8000) and FUE as the most expensive (between £5000 and £12000). See full chart made by MEDIGO here.
If you decide to opt for the services of a hair transplant clinic abroad (e.g. in Hungary), you can save between 40-60% on hair transplant.
#5 Should I take time off work after surgery?
If you don’t want to take time off work, you can schedule your surgery on a Friday to have the weekend to rest and relax.
Depending on which type of surgery you get, there may be some redness and swelling that will need a few days to subside. Plus, your doctor will tell you to avoid dusty and dirty places to eliminate any risk of infection.
#6 Will I have to repeat the hair implant procedure in the future?
The results of your hair transplant surgery won’t show right away. It may take up to a year before you notice the full effects, so don’t get disheartened if you don’t see anything happening in the first few months.
If the procedure is carried out well, there’s little to no risk of hair transplant failure and the results will be permanent.
However, because the transplanted hair follows the hair growth pattern of hair in the donor area, any hair loss that may appear in the donor area, will also appear in the receiving area.
So, down the road, you may have to repeat the procedure.