EXPERT GUIDE

Good candidate for a hair transplant

Medically reviewed by Dr. Sternberg Written by David Stelzer on 2 Feb 2021

For a successful hair transplantation, the patient should meet certain requirements. What are these requirements? And what are the arguments against having a hair transplantation? The following eight prerequisites are considered the success factors for a successful hair transplantation. If the conditions are only partially fulfilled, or not fulfilled at all, the hair transplantation can have undesirable results and appear very unnatural. If these requirements cannot be met, the hair loss should be treated with other therapies, if possible.

In a Nutshell

Requirements Donor area, AGA etc.
Methods FUE, FUT, DHI
Cost $2,000 – $12,000

1. Sufficient and healthy donor area

The hair in the donor area i.e., the area where the grafts are taken from, should be healthy and not affected by hair loss at present or in the future. In most cases, the donor area is the region below crown of the head. Up to 6,000 hair follicles can be extracted from the donor area without being visible

Hair Transplant Donor Area

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2. Type of hair loss

The most common form of hair loss is androgenetic alopecia (AGA) i.e., hair loss caused by a hereditary condition. Hair transplantation is one of the only successful treatments for congenital hair loss.

Before a hair transplantation, the cause of hair loss should always be determined. This is because there are other types of hair loss, such as diffuse hair loss or alopecia areata, for which hair transplantation is usually not suitable.

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3. Age and young patients

How old do you have to be for a hair transplant? At what age is hair transplantation appropriate?

These questions are always controversial in professional circles. In young patients (between the ages of 18 and 30) hair loss is often not yet complete and a prognosis is difficult to make.

Average age of patients at first hair transplant

Hair transplantation procedures in young patients can lead to an unnatural appearance of hair loss if the donor area can’t be properly identified. If grafts are taken from an area that will eventually bald, they will fall out after the transplant. This is why it is often recommended that patients wait until the age of 35-40 when the hair loss has thoroughly progressed to get a hair transplant. In most cases by this age doctors are able to predict how extensive the patient’s hair loss will become and extract grafts from hair that is DHT resistant.

However, this also depends on the individual case. Even young patients can be advised by a specialist and seek treatment for hair loss. There is no hard and fast rule to what age is appropriate for a hair transplant. Though, especially for young patients hair loss medication such as finasteride or minoxidil is necessary for a lasting result.

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4. Complete family anamnesis

With androgenetic alopecia, there is a strong correlation between hair loss and genetics. In many cases, the hair loss of older relatives allows us to draw conclusions about the future course of our own hair loss.

Therefore, before a hair transplantation, a family history and an analysis of the hair in the donor area is usually carried out to ensure the long-term success of the transplantation.

Our Tip

In our hair transplant cost study we found there are not only considerable price differences between individual surgeons and clinics, but also that the methods and quality vary greatly. This makes it even more important to obtain comprehensive information. Our hair loss experts will be happy to help you and find the best and most affordable method for your hair loss: Request a hair loss analysis now

5. Hair Characteristics

The characteristics of an individual’s hair can affect the outcome of a hair transplant. Factors such as hair color, texture, density, thickness and scalp flexibility all have a significant impact on the results of the procedure as well as the hair transplant method in which it is performed. The most common hair transplant technique according to our hair transplant study is the FUE method. The second most used method is FUT.

For instance, if the color of the patient’s hair is similar to their skin color then bald spots will be less apparent and require fewer grafts for the transplant. In addition, as one can imagine, the denser your hair is the more hair will be available to transplant from the donor area.

Curly or wavy hair, as well as especially thick hair, will provide a fuller appearance than thin, straight when transplanted.

Finally, the more flexible an individual’s scalp is the easier it is to extract grafts from the scalp. Patients with greater scalp flexibility will also heal better than those with a tight scalp.

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6. Hair loss forecast

With the help of the family anamnesis and the general anamnesis e.g., by means of trichodensitometry, the future course of hair loss can be predicted.

If the prognosis is unfavorable (type 6 and 7 according to the Hamilton-Norwood scale), hair transplantation is difficult because the hair does not have a sufficient donor area. In such cases, however, body hair can be occasionally be used for transplantation.

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7. Realistic patient expectations

Although hair transplantation is, in many cases, a useful therapy against androgenetic alopecia, every patient should be aware that hair may continue to fall out even after hair transplantation.

A youthful hairline or a complete hairline is also not possible in many cases. Therefore, a realistic expectation is essential for the success of the treatment.

Number of hair transplants per patient to achieve the desired result

8. General requirements

The patient should also meet the general requirements for surgery.

Drugs or organic and systemic diseases that severely weaken the body and the immune system often make a patient unsuitable for surgery.

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Where is a hair transplantation possible?

Hair transplantation offers are a dime a dozen. Furthermore, the regional price differences are high. Therefore, get an overview of the offer and compare the hair surgeons in United Kingdom, US or Turkey based on experiences of real patients, costs and treatment methods:

Is your preferred city or country not included? No problem, you can easily request an overview of all suitable offers.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is a good candidate for a hair transplant?

Can you get a hair transplant in your 20s?

Can hair transplant be done on thinning hair?

Sources

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