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Hair Transplant Donor Scar Placement - How High Can You Go?

3/18/2010 2:29:15 PM

Question:

I need approximately a 30cm strip which I believe is needed for 3,000+ grafts. I remember reading that the best place to harvest the strip is right above the bumps of the neck bone, but below the bump of the crown in the back of someone's head. But, my question is how far upward should you go towards the ears? I'm asking because I've seen varying placements of the donor strip from many top hair transplant doctors. Some go very high above the ears which is ideal to conceal the scar. But, how could one be sure that these hairs aren't susceptible to DHT? And what if the hair recedes to expose the scar -what then? Going lower and reaching around just above the ears is certainly difficult to hide, but it seems like the safer bet.

Answer:

Many leading hair transplant surgeons will extend into the upper areas well above the ears since in many cases; the densest and most viable hair resides there. It's also typically easier to conceal and hide the scar in these areas. Moreover, additional risks of scar stretching exist when hair is excised too closely to the ears. To stay within the universal safe zone, physicians who extend into the upper levels won't want to extend too closely to the temples since this area may be at risk for further loss depending on the patient. Some physicians will risk extending into these areas (with patient consent) if they feel the risks are minimal of loss to these areas and to harvest more grafts.

Depending on the patient's characteristics, some physicians may decide harvest the strip in the lower levels a little closer to the ears if they feel the best hair for transplanting resides there. While some additional risks of stretching exists and concealing the scar may be more difficult in some cases, I've seen beautiful scars in areas closer to the ears easily concealed by existing hair.

Evaluating a patient's individual characteristics will be vital for the physician in determining the best places to harvest the strip for surgical hair restoration. That said, I'd recommend discussing all aspects of the surgery with your physician, including his game plan for harvesting the strip. That way, the benefits and risks of all approaches are discussed and the decision making process is collaborative.

Bill Seemiller - Managing Publisher

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