This frequently asked question comes from a member of our Hair Restoration Forum and Social Community:
I recently underwent a follicular unit transplantation (FUT) procedure and was wondering how long I needed to wait before resuming my normal weight lifting routine? Are there certain exercises I need to avoid? Is there anyway to protect the hair transplant scar from stretching while working out?
Although this issue is frequently discussed on the Hair Restoration forums, many people have differing opinions on weight lifting after a hair transplant procedure. Of all the available explanations and suggestions, one of the clearest and informative replies comes from Coalition physician Dr. Robert M. Bernstein of New York:
You may perform normal daily activities for the next three days and moderate exercise for the next 14 days. After two weeks, you may resume your normal daily activities. Avoid direct trauma to the head for two weeks after the hair transplant procedure. Abstain from sexual intercourse and alcohol for THREE days following the procedure.
Follicular Unit Transplantation (WOUND CLOSED WITH SUTURES OR STAPLES).
The main concern with exercise is the suture line in the donor area. Straining or stretching the back of the neck may predispose to a wider scar, and should be avoided. Exercises that do not flex the neck, or put pressure, on the back of the neck are usually OK. In general, exercises such as sit-ups (especially with your hands clasped behind your head), squats or bench presses will strain the back of the neck and should be avoided for at least 4 weeks post-op. If the back of the scalp feels tight after 4 weeks, or if you have a tendency to heal with wide scars, these activities should be avoided for 3-6 months. Exercises such as walking up an incline, lifting very light weights and isolated leg exercises may be started within a few days after your procedure, if you feel up to it. Swimming may be resumed 2 weeks after your procedure. Since the impact of exercise will vary greatly from person to person, “cookbook” recommendations are not possible. Remember, the donor wound will not regain its full strength for at least 3-6 months after the hair transplant surgery, so some reasonably degree of caution should be exercised during this period. You must use your own good judgment in each particular case and call us if you have questions.
Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE PROCEDURE WITHOUT SUTURES).
Avoid any activities that rub or place excessive pressure on the donor area for several (2-3) days, as this may cause the area to bleed. (Be certain to follow the instructions on caring for the transplanted (grafted) area described above.)
Blake – aka Future_HT_Doc
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