Hair Transplantation, whether performed by Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT (strip procedure)) or Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE), is a highly successful operation in the vast majority of patients (generally > 90%). The catch, of course, is that you must wait many MONTHS for the final result.
Here is the timeline I give to patients on what to expect.
- Postoperative week 1-2: Scabs from transplantation fall off, the implant site can be shaved to minimize irregularities, the donor site starts be become imperceptible
- Postoperative week 3: The implanted hair falls out (and patients feel like the operation was a failure)
- Postoperative month 6: Transplanted hair has entered the anagen phase and begins to grow (finally…progress!)
- Postoperative month 9: Continued hair growth and density in the implanted zone (looking good)
- Postoperative month 12: At this point, further density is unlikely to noticeably improve without further surgical and/or nonsurgical intervention (PRP). It’s time to focus on outcome maintenance!
The natural hair cycle takes time and is generally imperceptible because at any given time 5-10% is falling out under a roughly EVEN DISTRIBUTION. When you have a hair transplant, in the course of 1 day, all the transplanted hair suddenly enters the same growth cycle!
A healthy approach to any surgical procedure is a solid grasp of the standard postoperative course. Ask questions, get answers, be prepared!