What are the disadvantages of hair transplant surgery? - Hair Transplant FAQs

There are a number of disadvantages to hair transplant surgeries. It’s important that all patients weigh the risks of hair transplant procedures against the benefits. Ultimately, there is little to no medical risk associated with the surgeries. This means that while disadvantages do exist, they are generally not negative enough for patients to refuse the procedures.

Minor medical risks associated with hair transplant surgeries include haemorrhaging and infections. Patients who follow the advice and recommendations of the surgical team are unlikely to experience either of these medical risks. If infections or excess bleeding does occur, simple treatment options are available. There is also a minor risk of nerve damage associated with hair transplant procedures. This nerve damage is most common in surgeries which remove a portion of the scalp.

One obvious disadvantage of hair transplant surgery is the cost. For those who are financially unstable, hair transplant procedures are simply impossible. Additionally, it may be financially disadvantageous for those who have not tried other means of thickening or re-growing the hair. It’s important to try other treatment options, including diet and lifestyle changes, before assuming that natural hair growth is impossible. For those who cannot afford hair transplantation, there are a number of medications and shampoos that can effectively treat hair loss in many individuals.

Scarring is another potential disadvantage of hair transplant procedures. Although scarring is usually minimal, there is always the chance of improper healing or noticeable scars. The scars associated with FUE procedures are small dots or bumps at follicular insertion sites. FUT procedures usually result in thin, unnoticeable scars at the follicular insertion sites and a 1 millimetre scar at the donor site. These scars are generally invisible, but may become visible if patients choose to shave the hair.

Occasionally hair loss is experienced after transplant surgeries. Sometimes this is simply shedding, which means that the hair will grow back in a month or two. It is possible, however, for a small to large percentage of transplanted hairs to die and fall out. The risks associated with FUT procedures are extremely low, just 2%-5% of transplanted hairs do not survive the procedure. FUE procedures are far more likely to result in the death of previously healthy hairs, but most procedures will only result in the death of about 10% of the transplanted hairs.

While hair transplant surgeries have been improved upon, the procedures are not perfect. An unnatural appearance may occur if the grafts were taken from donor sites without a sufficient amount of hair or if too few grafts were used to cover large areas of balding.

Most patients find that hair transplant procedures are extremely successful. The surgical team will help patients maintain realistic expectations, which is the key to avoiding disappointment. It is impossible to create a thick, full head of hair in an individual who has experienced a large area of balding. Realistic expectations and following the guidelines of the surgical team should ensure a successful hair transplant experience.

Hair transplant FAQs