After looking through hundreds of pre and post-op hair transplant results, I’m wondering if anyone else has a similar concern as me. A lot of the pre-op photos show hair combed in a way which would:
- Not be a natural hair style.
- Makes the hair loss appear worse than it actually is. .
However, the post-op photos show the hair neatly styled and combed over a lot of the thinning hair exposed on the pre-op photos. Obviously, doctors will do this to maximize the “wow!” factor of the results but I think a fair comparison if you’re going to show the best it can look after a hair transplant is to show a photo pre-op with the same style and not a combed back style that exposes the thin areas. Then, 12 months later, there is a photo with those areas covered by what was native hair anyway. ! could style my hair in a way which would make me look 10 times balder than when I’ve styled it properly so if I showed them two different photos it would look like quite a transformation when, in reality ,I’d have no more hair than before.
First, the photographer should try to be consistent. Although I’m the first to admit that I’m not a great photographer, I am consistent. Our “befores” and “afters” are taken in front of the same blue background and under the same lights and when I use flash (and it makes a difference) I almost always point it out in the discussion.
It’s tough to get that “apples to apples” comparison we all want. People grow at different rates and change their hairstyles, sometimes for the better sometimes for the worse. Just like facelift patients almost always come back for post-op pics with makeup, these are the very same people who complained that the afters they saw looked made-up.
Sometimes people have an agenda. There are plenty of ways hair restoration physicians can make a bad result better but you guys can usually pick this up from your experience in looking at gobs of pictures. Similarly, sometimes patients want to make it look worse than it actually is. I’ve encountered this as most doctors have. From a biased point of view, I think that this is less jumped on by forum members than when a doctor “alters” pics but, nevertheless, most of you guys can pick this up too.
Dr. William Lindsey – McLean, VA
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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