Avoiding Sun Exposure after Hair Transplant Surgery
Hair transplant surgery is a precise treatment that can permanently treat hair loss in men and women. An experienced surgeon like Dr. Raymond Konior can minimize the risk of post-surgical hair loss, but the best way to ensure success is to follow his post-operative instructions closely. This includes avoiding sun exposure after hair transplant surgery for several months. Your scalp needs ample time to heal and for the follicles to take root. Sun exposure may not only damage the skin, but also the hair follicles. This could result in a failed surgery and may require additional treatment. Dr. Konior and our staff at Chicago Hair Institute in Chicago, Illinois will do everything we can to ensure your hair transplant surgery is successful.
Damage to the Skin
Incisions made in any part of the skin become more sensitive to light. They are particularly sensitive to the ultraviolet rays put off by the sun and in tanning beds. Sun exposure could hinder the healing process and result in excess scarring.
Transplanted skin is also unable to protect itself from sun exposure for at least a few months following surgery. Our skin contains cells called chromatophores. These cells are responsible for pigmentation of the skin. When exposed to the sun, the chromatophores darken the skin to protect it from further exposure.
When skin is removed and transplanted, these cells either die off or go dormant. It can take several months for these cells to regenerate in the newly transplanted grafts. In the mean time, this leaves the transplanted skin at greater risk for sun damage.
Damage to the Hair Follicles
Hair transplants involve several layers of the skin, not just the surface layer. While the epidermis, or surface layer, heals relatively quickly, it can take much longer for the deeper tissues to heal. Damage from sun exposure can penetrate the epidermis, damaging the underlying tissues and hair follicles that have not yet healed. This could result in hair transplant failure.
How Long Will I Need Protection from the Sun?
You should expect to protect your scalp from the sun for a minimum of four months after hair transplant surgery. Dr. Konior recommends wearing a hat that provides full coverage of the transplant area during this time. You want to avoid the use of sunscreen until the incisions have fully healed.
Once all incisions have healed, he may recommend using a hat or sunscreen with SPF of at least 30 for several more months. Following these post-operative guidelines will increase your chances of transplant success.
Learn More about Hair Transplant Surgery Recovery
For more detailed information on the recovery process after hair transplant surgery, contact Chicago Hair Institute to schedule a consultation with Dr. Konior. He can answer all your questions and address any concerns you may have about the procedure itself or the recovery period. He will guide you throughout the process to ensure you see successful and satisfactory results.