What is a Hair Transplant?

John Maddock

John Maddock

Hi, I'm John. About age 30 my hair started receding. After trying lots of products I eventually decided on a hair transplant. And now I have my hair back.

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What is a Hair Transplant?

A hair transplant is where hair follicles are surgically removed from the back of your head and then transplanted into an area where you have lost hair, usually at the crown or on the hairline. Read more HERE.

There are two types of hair transplant, FUT (strip) and FUE. FUT or strip transplants were the predecessor of FUE transplants.

In an FUT procedure a surgeon will remove a small strip of skin from the back of your head, and stitch the gap together. The surgeon will then extract the hair follicles from that donor strip and implant them in to the area you have hair loss. A FUT procedure is slightly faster and the donor area heals quicker, but it will leave a horizontal scar at the back of your head. So you will not be able to cut your hair short without it being visible.

FUE transplants are the more modern option and do not leave a scar. In an FUE transplant a surgeon will extract small skin grafts one by one from the back of your head. A graft will be between 1-3mm in diameter and will contain between 2 and 5 individual hair follicles. The surgeon will take a number of grafts and then extract the individual follicles from the grafts and implant them in to an area where you have hair loss. This process takes a little longer, costs a little more, but leaves no scarring.

fue-hair-transplant

The implanting of hairs does not differ between FUT and FUE. The only difference is the extraction method.

Hair transplant surgery dates back as early as the 50’s, but has really come along massively over the last 10 – 15 years. So doctors have been performing these procedures and perfecting them for years. In the realm of cosmetic procedure’s hair transplants are considered to be one of the least invasive and one of the more straight forward procedures.

Typically a hair transplant procedure can be done in a day. Larger procedures may take two days, one for extraction and one for implanting. Healing is fast, just a few weeks. But it can take up to 12 months for you to see the full effect of the transplant, because your transplanted follicles go through shock and need a couple of months before they can start growing new hairs.

Before considering a transplant you may want to look at trying some hair loss products.

Hair Transplant Common Questions

Check out the FAQ’s section for more.

How much does it cost?

Prices in Europe are between 50% and 75% cheaper than in the UK or US. Packages start from £1500 and include accommodation. I paid £2000 for 1000 grafts (3000 hairs) in Budapest, which is less than a 3 hour flight from the UK. I was quoted between £8000 and £12,000 for the same procedure in the UK. Adding £200 for flights I paid £2200 in total - so it is very affordable!

Does it hurt?

No! A hair transplant is painless. On the day of the transplant you are given a few local anaesthetic injections into your scalp. You may feel the first one or two. From that point on your are numbed and you don't feel anything. Most people actually fall asleep - I did for most of the day!

How long before it grows back?

A few weeks after your transplant your new hair starts to fall out. It then takes a couple of months to start growing again. Between month 1 and month 3 post-op your hair is thin. They call this the 'ugly ducking' phase. This soon passes and it starts getting really exciting. Around month 4 I had good coverage and was going to the hair dressers again. By month 6 you could not tell I had a transplant. When it got to 12 months post-op I was a different person.

Regaine is an FDA approved treatment for hair loss, suitable for both men and women. The active ingredient it contains is called Minoxidil. Minoxidil is clinically proven to prevent further hair loss in around 80% cases. It works by enhancing the blood supply to your hair follicles.

Naturelo Multivitamins are fantastic! They contain 110% of your recommended daily allowance of Biotin, as well as a host of other vitamins that are great for your hair and general well being. I love them!

Keratin is a basic protein that makes up your hair, skin, and nails. Biotin improves your body’s keratin infrastructure. It adds colour and thickness to your hair.

Alpecin Caffeine Shampoo is a really nice shampoo to use. It claims to boost blood flow to the scalp which promotes hair growth. It’s not as effective as Regaine, but it’s still a really nice cost effective shampoo.

Hair Transplant Top Posts

FUE Post-Op 5 Months

At this point I would say that my hairline has reached about 80-90% thickness. I’ve been to the hairdressers again this month for another trim.

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