by James Harris, MD
May 1, 2020
Hair Transplant Recovery
Many men and women who are considering a hair transplant are curious about the downtime associated with the procedure. This is understandable. We all have personal and professional lives that place demands on us, and we realize that any downtime is tapping into a very valuable resource: your time.
Simply put, downtime with Hair Sciences Center is minimal. This is an outpatient procedure that is generally done in one day (sometimes two, but you will be informed regarding the duration beforehand) with only local anesthetic, so it is minimally invasive.
Hair transplant recovery is usually thought of in three ways:
- How long are the effects of the surgery visible?
- How long before I can return to regular activities?
- When will I see the results?
Hair transplant recovery – healing from surgery
You have gone ahead with the decision and had the transplant. You will never look back. Once the hair follicles (called grafts) have been “planted” into the thinning (recipient) areas, the donor and recipient areas are then cleaned and if you had a full shave FUE a dressing will be applied to the donor area. No dressing is applied to the grafted area. Our staff will then review the post-operative instructions. Pain medications are provided and you will be given a special spray that needs to be applied to the grafts. You will then be ready to leave the clinic, and we recommend wearing a hat as you do so.
Expect some crusting and scabbing for up to 10 days post-surgery (see image below). Some patients also experience pinkness or redness in the transplanted areas, which can last two-four weeks. Furthermore, if your donor area was shaved, it will take about two weeks for it to look “normal”, as though you had a very short haircut. You can wear a hat during this period.
The implanted hairs will take root in the recipient areas and grow for two-three weeks. However, at this point the follicles will go dormant and these transplanted hairs will fall out. Don’t panic, this is a natural part of the process! You will then look like you did pre-transplant.
Hair transplant recovery – when can I resume activities?
This one is easy—if you had FUE we request that you avoid heavy or strenuous activity for three days post-surgery. After that you may resume all activities, except for swimming and those requiring a helmet, which should be resumed no earlier than seven days. If you had a strip harvest you should avoid heavy or strenuous activity, swimming, and wearing a helmet for 7 days after surgery.
Hair transplant recovery – when will I see the results?
When you’ve come this far, the anticipation sets in—let’s face it you can’t wait to see your new hair! The first signs of growth in the transplanted area typically appear after two to three months. Since all of the transplanted follicles do not grow at once, the growth is naturally staggered over time. Approximately 20% of the transplanted hair can be seen around the third month, and about 60% is visible by the fifth month. At eight months approximately 70% of growth is visible, and most patients see the full results at ten months out. See a Hair Sciences Center patient case study to see how transplanted follicles naturally grow in within five days.
This new hair is natural, and 100% undetectable as a transplant. Even hair care professionals will be unable to tell you had a hair transplant. You can style your new hair in any way you want, just like you did before you lost hair.
We can’t wait to set you on your journey of transformation. Ask me a question or contact us for a confidential consultation about your unique circumstances. We can set you on a journey to regain your confidence. View our complete before and after gallery of successful hair transplants.
Dr. James Harris is an internationally renowned hair transplant surgeon, inventor of patented follicular unit extraction technology, published author in the field of hair restoration and an advocate for patient care. He is currently at the forefront of research and development in the field of hair cloning. Learn more about Dr. Harris or read rave reviews from his patients.