You have fretted over your hair loss for a period of time now. So you decided to take action, going to visit a doctor about your receding hairline. You learned about procedures they offer and feel confident that a transplant provides hope for you. Before you schedule this surgery, you must ensure your chosen surgeon is up to par. Below are six key questions to ask your hair transplant clinic before scheduling surgery.
Why is my surgeon the right choice for my procedure?
Whether you live in the United States or another country, the U.S. offers some of the world’s leading hair transplant clinics and surgeons. Many people travel into the country or from coast-to-coast in search of the right surgeon each year. But you still need to do your research into your choice of hair restoration doctors. Find out what makes yours the right choice for your procedure.
Besides asking the above question, how else can you look into your surgeon’s background? Options include:
- Ensure membership in the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS)
- Verify membership in the American Academy of Anti Aging Medicine (A4M)
- Ask whether they are a member of the American Association of Integrative Medicine
- Confirm membership in good standing in their state medical society, such as the North Carolina Medical Society
- Confirm the doctor is Board Certified
- Check into how long the hair transplant clinic has been in operation
- Look at as many of their before-and-after patient images, as possible
For your most experienced surgeon and the best results, look for one with at least 20 years’ experience in the field of hair restoration. It is only since the 1990s that hair restoration has provided natural-looking results, instead of the “plugged hairline” look obvious to others. You want your own most natural-looking outcome. So find a surgeon who perfected their skills in the 1990s or beyond, yet one who has 20 years’ experience or more.
Does the surgeon recommend other methods of treatment, before going into surgery or as an alternative?
Surgery is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Maybe hair loss treatments like minoxidil or finasteride can help you grow hair. Both of these medications are FDA approved, meaning the U.S. government backs their use and claims of patient outcomes. Try one of these medications for a year or longer before surgery in the hair transplant clinic.
Not only do these hair loss medications offer potential improvement of your current hairline and overall growth, but the results often provide more hair for the surgery’s best outcome. At the least, they can slow hair loss and give you more time to consider your surgical treatment or save money for it.
Is the recommended surgery the best option for me?
The three main kinds of surgery for hair loss are:
- Follicular Unit Extraction, FUE
- Follicular Unit Transplantation, FUT
- Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP), with or without hair transplant surgery
FUE is most widely used, involving harvesting of hair follicles from one area of positive growth, such as the back and sides. Follicles from those areas transplant into balding regions. This method is minimally invasive and does not leave a scar.
FUT involves reinsertion of individual hair follicles or small groups into balding areas, as part of strip hair transplant. PRP involves harvesting a small amount of your blood, extracting the plasma. The surgeon soak your grafts in this plasma and inject it into balding regions to promote better healing and new hair growth.
Will I need time off from work or other activities for healing?
Ask how much time you need off from work for adequate healing from your surgery. The amount of time required depends on multiple individual factors, such as your body’s own reactions to the surgery and the treatment you receive. Many people want to wait until some or all of their redness diminishes, so no one will know about the surgery, before going back to work. When you schedule your procedure can depend on these factors. Men often like to schedule their surgery with a week or more of time off, around major holidays, just before a long weekend or between leaving an old job and starting a new one.
Will I see results of my surgery right away?
This is a big question you need to ask before your surgery in a hair transplant clinic. For most patients, it takes four months or more to see real results. This depends on the hair growth cycle. Then it can take another four to eight months to receive full benefit from your procedure. If a surgeon is promising you the sun, moon and stars from your treatment, you may wish to reconsider your choice of clinics or doctors.
Is this the only surgery I will ever need?
When you scour the web looking for a hair transplant clinic, you usually come across complaints from patients who claim “poor results” after surgery. Many feel upset by the need for future procedures, to continue their hair restoration process. Whether you will need another surgery in the near future or as you age largely depends on your own type of hair loss, health and other factors. But you need a surgeon who talks openly with you about realistic expectations.
In North Carolina and throughout the United States, men trust Dr. Arthur Zacco of AZ Hair Restoration. Learn more about this prestigious hair transplant clinic and whether you can benefit from restoration methods through an in-person consultation or video call. Schedule your consultation today at 919-615-0577.