Hair transplants are the best available solution to get rid of baldness. However, many patients who will do a hair transplant are worried about its durability. “How long do hair transplants last?” is a typical question among men and women interested in this technique.
As hair is an essential part of our appearance, it is easy to understand that hair loss often lowers self-esteem and causes insecurity and body image issues. Retrieving luxuriant hair may look like an impossible goal, but hair transplantation is the way to go for patients with androgenic alopecia.
Let sink into what affects hair transplants, how to make sure the grafts will last, and the best techniques for a long-lasting hair transplant.
How long do hair transplants last?
Hair transplant is the most durable available solution to baldness. While drug treatments are efficient only if taken without interruption, a hair transplant lasts for life if rightly performed. Unlike drug treatments, such as Minoxidil, a hair transplant has no harmful side effects in the long term.
FUE and DHI hair transplant results last for life. The surgeon harvests the grafts in areas where hair is not sensitive to androgen. Androgen is a male hormone like testosterone and causes baldness. This type of baldness is different in males and females.
In males, androgen causes hair loss on the top of the head (the vertex) while the hair on the side of the head (the crown) remains. This alopecia starts earlier or later depending on genetic. Some men begin losing hair in their early 20s, other in their 40s. 70% of men experience androgenic alopecia in their lifetime.
In females, androgenic alopecia is much less common. It often results from a hormonal imbalance or change, such as menopause. There is no bald spot but a diffuse loss of hair density.
For both, a hair transplant is the best solution. DHI hair transplant is excellent to both create volume and cover bald spots. Once implanted into the scalp, the grafts do not fall because their genetic composition makes them insensitive to androgen.
How long do hair transplants last? What matters
Several factors may affect the lasting of hair transplants. First, all hair transplant techniques are not equal when it comes to lasting. Outdated methods, such as FUT or artificial hair transplants, are less effective and do not age well because the grafts are incompatible with the body or not well implanted. Techniques such as FUE or DHI have a higher rate of long-term lasting.
The grafts harvesting method also matters in how long the grafts will last. The faster the surgeon implants the grafts after harvesting, the better they will set into the scalp.
Another issue that may impact the lasting is the age of the patient when he undergoes the procedure. Patients under the age of 30 often do not have stable baldness and keep losing their hair. It does not affect the lasting of the grafts themselves. Still, it changes the procedure results as the hair keeps failing and lets a bald spot between the grafts and the hair, which are not affected by androgens, the hormones responsible for baldness in most men and some women. This phenomenon is known as the “fluffy patch effect.”
This issue does not involve medical risks, simply esthetic ones. Young patients have a higher chance to get the “fluffy patch effects” that require another surgery to fill the gap between the grafts and the “eternal hair,” the hair androgens do not impact.
How long do hair transplants last? Pro tips
- Discuss hair transplant with your doctor to ensure your baldness is stable, and the procedure results meet your expectations.
- Follow the doctor’s guidelines after the surgery. The grafts are sensitive on the first day after your surgery. Numerous activities (sport, sex, sweating, aquatic activities) are to avoid while the grafts are not well set yet.