Hair Transplant Megasessions Versus Multiple Small Hair Transplants: How Do they Affect Donor Supply?
Does having multiple hair transplants and essentially trying to “maintain” reduce the number of grafts you will get rather than waiting till you need quite a few? For instance, would a person that had three 1200 graft procedures have the same remaining available donor as the guy who had one 3600 graft procedure?
You raise interesting questions! I tend not to do repeated small sessions so I can’t answer this from experience. My guess is that the total number of follicular unit grafts available would be about the same for your hypothetical patient.
A guy who could get 3600 grafts in one hair transplant would have a 30 cm to 35 cm long donor strip available from ear-to-ear. To get 1200 grafts, only a 10-12 cm long strip would be removed and there would still be 2400 grafts available from the remaining untouched area.
Another question: Would he ultimately have more hair in the same transplanted area after 1 session of 3600 grafts or 3 sessions of 1200 grafts? That is up for debate but I would be in the one session camp.
Hair transplants are meant to improve appearance; not to maintain it. Hair loss medications like Propecia (finasteride) and Rogaine (minoxidil) are meant to maintain hair. Once you are committed to hair transplantation, you can transplant an area as soon as it is thin enough that there would be a noticeable improvement a year later. I don’t transplant an area until I can see scalp through the existing hair but I don’t make my patients wait until they are bald either.
Cam Simmons, MD ABHRS
Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Coalition Hair Loss Learning Center, and the Hair Loss Q & A Blog.
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