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Concerned about Hair Growth at 3.5 Months After Hair Transplant Surgery

8/19/2008 11:38:00 AM

Question:

I had a 2500 graft hair transplant done 3.5 months ago. So far, everything has gone smoothly. I had no pain or headache during or after the hair restoration procedure and the donor scar is healing nicely. However, I am slightly concerned with the hair growth rate and my hair loss pattern. I continue to lose hair that appears to be attached to the bulb or follicle. Am I losing transplanted hair and if so, are these going to come back? Also, very few hairs have grown so far. I am on Propecia (finasteride) and Rogaine (minoxidil) for hair loss. Please help.

Answer:

3.5 months after a hair transplant is extremely early in the game. Most patients only start to experience new hair growth between 3 to 5 months. Understand that transplanted hair typically starts growing thin, fine, and colorless, invisible to the naked eye, but can be felt with your fingertips. Over the next 9-12 months, new hair will continue to grow, thicken, darken, and mature and will eventually look just like your natural hair. Waiting for transplanted hair regrowth is the hardest part, but give it a good year before evaluating the results.

The progression of male pattern baldness is certainly a valid concern. Given that you are on Propecia (finasteride) and Rogaine (minoxidil) , you are doing everything you can medically to attempt to keep your hair loss under control. Since there is no guarantee of success with non-surgical hair loss treatments, your surgeon should have kept a good bit of donor hair in reserve for the potential need for subsequent hair transplant procedures. Be sure to speak to your surgeon about long term hair restoration goals.

In my opinion, you should speak to your hair restoration physician about hair loss that appears to be attached to the follicle. It may just be late hair shedding of transplanted hair that remained in the scalp longer than the typical 2-4 weeks. It could also be post hair transplant telogen effluvium (temporary shock loss) to native hair that is attached to dry skin. To be sure, consult with your surgeon who can evaluate your scalp and give you a better idea as to what's going on.

Bill - Associate Publisher of the Hair Transplant Network, the Coalition Hair Loss Learning Center, and the Hair Loss Q & A Blog.
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