American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery

I’m losing hair and I’ve been thinking about hair replacement?

Question: How effective is a hair transplant surgery?

Answer: Very, if done by a skilled, artistic, ethical, and experienced hair transplant surgeon.  I believe that someone who does not really care about hair restoration will do poor work compared with someone who truly cares about the results of hair restoration as much as any other surgery he does.  I truly care about hair restoration and applying myself to do the very best.  We have truly come out of the dark ages where old round punches that left unsightly plugs are a thing of the past.  Nevertheless bad work still abounds, principally due to bad technique and not due to extremely large grafts anymore.  For example, if the surgeon designs a very ugly and unnatural hairline, the result will be poor.  If the assistant team does not help perform equally good work, the result can also fail:  graft dissection and placement are vital to a successful outcome.  Another important consideration is how one continues to lose hair.  With ongoing hair loss, it is imperative that a patient be counseled on the need for further hair transplants and it is also critical that the surgeon determine whether there will be sufficient number of hair to cover previous transplanted results and to keep the result looking natural over time.

I’m interested in a laser hair transplant.

Question: How does a laser hair transplant surgery work?

Answer: The term laser has been unfortunately a bit romanticized in terms of what it claims it can do.  I personally believe that laser hair restoration is not a viable treatment method, as it causes undue thermal damage when making the recipient sites or “holes” unnecessarily.  I attend every major meeting of the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery and have not heard anything about laser hair transplant surgery in years.  That being said, I know about “low level lasers” that are used to help regenerate hair and to help with recovery after a hair transplant procedure.  Again, I do not personally use LLLs because I do not believe there is sufficient science to back this technology up.  However, I believe some of my trusted colleagues are seeing nice results that help support their hair restoration work.