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What to expect at sk:n
Before we book you in for hair transplant surgery, a full consultation must take place with the surgeon. This usually lasts for 1-2 hours and is free of charge; we just ask that you pay a holding fee of £25, which will be refunded after you’ve attended. During the consultation, the surgeon will:
- Determine whether you are a suitable candidate for surgery
- Discuss the procedure itself; what will happen during the operation
- Discuss your expectations from the surgery and what kind of results you are likely to achieve
- Show you a visualisation of the potential results using photography software
- Prepare you for the potential side-effects and explain the aftercare process
After surgery, it will take some time for your scalp to heal. How long this takes will depend on a number of factors, including the amount of hair you have had transplanted, your age, health and skin type – and how well you follow the aftercare procedure. Below is an overview of what to expect after your surgery:
Immediately after surgery:
You will not be able to drive home after surgery, so you should arrange for a lift. The anaesthetic will start to wear off about eight hours after the procedure and you will begin to experience some mild discomfort. You will probably be prescribed painkillers by your doctor and told to avoid alcohol and operating heavy machinery/driving for 24 hours.
You might be required to sleep sitting up during the 24 hours after surgery in order to avoid rubbing the treated area, as this could affect the final result.
Caring for your grafts:
You will notice some crusting and scabbing on your scalp in the days and weeks following your treatment. These should begin to fall off after 1-3 three weeks. It’s important that the skin is kept clean and moist during this time, so your surgeon will provide you with personalised aftercare advice with this in mind.
For 48 hours after surgery you should avoid:
- Drinking alcohol
- Bending over to the floor
- Sleeping on the treated area
- Rubbing, scratching or bumping your scalp
- Washing your hair
For two weeks after surgery you should avoid:
- Any strenuous activity or exercise
- Taking aspirin or ibuprofen (or products containing these medicines)
- Using hair products or cosmetics
- Eating spicy food
To minimise the risk of infection, you might be required to take some time off work, depending on the nature of your job.
12 months after surgery:
To ensure you are happy with your results, the surgeon will carry out a post-operative review 12 months after treatment, to assess your regrowth.
The tiny hair that is transplanted during surgery normally falls out within one week. After this, the hair will grow normally from the root and you will begin to see noticeable results from approximately 12 weeks after treatment.
If the surgeon is transplanting into a thinning area, this can occasionally cause temporary shedding of some existing nearby hair shafts – but these will regrow.
You might notice that the transplanted hair is slightly frizzy in texture, but the follicles should settle down and start making better quality hair fibre after about 14 months.
Can I Still Carry Out Normal Activities After Hair Transplant Surgery?
After about two weeks, you should be able to resume your normal day-to-day activities. But, there are important aftercare protocols in place immediately after surgery which must be followed to avoid infection and complications.
Can I Wear A Hat After Hair Transplant Surgery?
You might want to wear a hat after surgery to cover the grafts from view while they heal, but it’s best not to wear a hat if possible, as your skin will heal more quickly if it’s exposed to the air. If you feel you must cover up, a loose baseball cap, or a hat with holes to allow the skin to breathe, is best.
Can Women Have Hair Transplant Surgery?
Yes, women as well as me can have hair transplant surgery at sk:n – up to the age of 70.
How Long Will It Take For Me To Recover From Hair Transplant Surgery?
The scabbing and crusting will begin to drop off after a couple of weeks, but you won’t see any visible hair regrowth until at least 12 weeks after surgery. You are likely to experience some swelling and pain in the days following treatment, but recovery time varies from patient to patient, so speak to your surgeon for more personalised advice.
Will I Go Bald Again?
As it is difficult to predict the pattern and speed of hair loss for any particular person, there is a chance you might still experience some hair loss after surgery – but from your existing, natural hair. This means you may require a number of treatments to achieve a full head of hair. However, the hair that has been transplanted should not fall out and should continue to grow, permanently.
What Are The Potenital Risks Of Hair Transplant Surgery?
As with any type of surgical procedure, there is a risk of infection or scarring with hair transplant surgery. There is also the chance that the results may not be as you’d hoped or that you continue to experience hair loss after surgery. Your surgeon will discuss the risks with you at length during your consultation.
Will I Need Time Off Work After My Hair Transplant Surgery?
It’s likely that you will need to take some time off work to recover and to avoid infection. You won’t be able to drive immediately after surgery and should avoid strenuous activity for at least two weeks, so this may impact your ability to carry out your job for a while. Your surgeon will be able to provide more personalised advice.
Will There Be Any Scarring?
With FUE (individual follicle extraction) the scarring is usually so small it is invisible to the naked eye. With FUT (strip extraction) there will be some minimal visible scarring, which usually fades to a very faint line and can be covered with your hair.