Hair Repair – Correcting Old Problems, Avoiding New Ones
What Makes a Transplant Look Unnatural?
This can be due to a variety of problems. A hairline may be poorly designed, placed too low or too high, or grafts that are too large and catch the eye. The list goes on and on. If people notice something, it’s not completely natural. Skill and attention to detail create something that will go unnoticed by others, but that you will value for a lifetime.
Why Should This Ever Happen?
Hair restoration surgery takes a lot of skill, judgment, and attention to detail. In the case of plugs from years past, that was simply the technology of the day. Today we have the ability to produce natural results, but the surgeon must have those skills. Find a skilled surgeon who uses advanced techniques and rest assured. You will get a great result.
Can a Un-Natural Transplant Be Fixed?
Yes! An experienced hair surgeon with a creative approach and a broad range of surgical techniques will be able to repair and improve nearly anything. Dr. Elliott believes there is a solution to any problem. This is why 30% of the patients who come to see him are seeking to improve results from surgery done elsewhere. Dr. Elliott is the creator, editor and contributing author to the column “Hair Repair” in Hair Transplant Forum International (the official publication of the ISHRS ). This column deals with exactly these sorts of problems. He has given lectures to doctors from all over the world about these techniques.
Transplants Are Permanent. if They Look Unnatural, How Can Anything Be Done?
This takes a special surgical and creative skills. Grafts must sometimes be removed and at other times can be “blended in” by placing micrografts around them. If grafts need to be removed, the follicles can be re-transplanted back into more suitable areas. Tell your hair surgeon what bothers you about the appearance of the old transplants. A surgeon with the right set of skills and experience will understand and know what to do.
How Do You Go About Fixing This Sort of Problem?
The first step is to explain to Dr. Elliott what you see as the problem. For example, “my hairline looks unnatural and catches people’s eye”. Dr. Elliott will explain where the problems lie and what the choices are to solve them. Creativity and advanced surgical skills are needed here.
What Corrective Techniques Does Dr. Elliott Perform?
In the last 8 years, Dr. Elliott has developed many surgical skills needed to fix any problem. Hairline re-contouring, graft removal and re-transplantation, softening techniques, scar revision, and frontal and lateral brow lifts are all part of his practice.
My Hairline Is All Plugs From 15 Years Ago. What Can I Do?
First of all, know that you are not alone. Like most experienced hair surgeons, Dr. Elliott has seen this many times. Many men in this situation have been stuck with wearing a hat or hairpiece to hide these grafts. Others are okay with their hair combed forward until the wind lifts it up and the plugs show. After such a bad experience in the past, it is difficult to believe that there is hope. There is. Dr. Elliott believes any problem can be improved and will show you how it can be done with today’s technology.
What About Transplants That Look Natural, but Are Just Too Thin and Sparse?
Natural but thin and sparse is what we were all trying to get away from by having transplants in the first place. Remember the two goals: naturalness AND coverage. Bald is natural but without coverage. Hairpieces give 100% coverage but aren’t natural. Neither one is what you want. You should know before you start what it is going to take. In Dr. Elliott’s experience, restoring the front (what you see in the mirror) ideally takes 8,000-12,000 hairs (depending on the person). If you are starting from bald and have a session of 1500 follicular units, you would get about 3,300 hairs. That means one session with FUT will not be enough for most people. You will never wish you had less hair, but this would surely leave you wishing for more.
How Do I Avoid These Problems?
You need a good doctor with the skills to do the surgery, but you also need accurate information about your options and what is involved in achieving your goals. Find someone who will help you in the long run. Hair loss is a long-term problem, isn’t it?