Are Scars Visible After Hair Transplant Surgery?
Thinning hair and hair loss are common concerns among men and women. While plenty of shampoos and treatments promise to restore fuller, thicker hair, many fail to provide the desired results. Hair transplant surgery is often the most effective treatment for hair loss.
Doctors at the Chicago Hair Institute offer several hair restoration techniques, including follicular unit extraction (FUE) and follicular unit transplantation (FUT), to increase hair volume. Patients considering hair restoration at our Chicago, IL, clinic often ask, “Will I have noticeable scars after hair transplant surgery?” Here, we prepare our patients for the degree of scarring they may expect after FUE or FUT.
Will I Have Scarring After Hair Transplant Surgery?
During hair transplant surgery, hair follicles are removed from the donor site (typically the back of the scalp) and moved to the transplant site. To remove hair follicles, the doctor makes an incision or series of incisions at the donor site. As a result of the incisions, scars are an unavoidable aspect of a hair transplant.
Hearing that hair transplant scars are unavoidable can be disheartening for our Chicago patients. However, most hair transplant scars are barely visible after the skin heals. The degree of scarring and the type of scar depends on the hair transplant technique, post-surgical care practices, and the patient’s genetics.
During an FUE procedure, the surgeon removes individual hair follicle grafts from the donor site. Each graft is removed with a micro-punch tool similar to a paper hole punch. Depending on how much donor hair is needed, an FUE procedure can require hundreds of puncture incisions.
Fortunately, the scars caused by an FUE procedure are extremely small. Once the skin heals, FUE scars should look like tiny white dots. The scars of an FUE procedure are hardly noticeable, making this transplant technique ideal for individuals who prefer a short haircut.
During an FUT procedure, the surgeon removes a strip of hair follicles from the donor site. After removing the donor follicles, the remaining skin is sutured together. The FUT procedure leaves a linear scar at the donor site. The length of the scar varies based on how many donor follicles are needed, but it may extend across the back of the scalp from one ear to the other.
FUT scars are larger than FUE scars, so they tend to be more noticeable. Still, as the skin heals, scar tissues should lighten. Many people heal with a smooth white or light pink scar that is easily hidden beneath a longer hairstyle.
Minimizing the Appearance of Scars
There is nothing that can be done to prevent hair transplant scars. However, there are steps our Chicago patients can take to further minimize their appearance. We recommend the following:
- Closely follow all post-transplant care instructions
- Protect incision sites from UV rays to encourage healing
- Choose a hairstyle that suites your transplant technique
- Consider scalp micropigmentation (medical-grade tattoos) to conceal transplant scars
Contact Chicago Hair Institute
Hair transplant surgery effectively restores volume to sparse hairlines while leaving minimally visible scars. If you would like to learn more about the hair restoration techniques offered at the Chicago Hair Institute, we invite you to contact our clinic online and request a consultation.