There is a misconception that hair restoration does not work because the newly transplanted hair fall outs and voids the results. While it is true that the transplanted hairs fall out around 4 weeks after a hair transplant, this is normal and new hair will grow in their place. This process is known as shedding or effluvium but many people refer to it as “shock hair loss”. To better understand why the transplanted hair falls out after a hair transplant, you must first understand hair growth and the natural shedding process.
The Natural Shedding Process
Like the human body, the hair follicles have a growth cycle. There are three phases for hair growth and shedding which are the anagen, catagen and telogen stages:
- The anagen phase is the active or growth phase. The hair that in this stage will grow about 1cm every 28 days. This phase can last between 2 to 6 years.
- The catagen phase is also referred to as the transitional phase. About 3% of the hair on the scalp is in this phase at any given time. This phase lasts for 2 to 3 weeks.
- The telogen phase is also referred to as the resting phase. This is the stage where the hairs are shed. Approximately 6-8% of the hairs are in this phase, at any given time, and it lasts about 100 days. As many as 50-100 hairs are typically shed, each day, during this stage.
Shedding After a Hair Transplant
Shedding after a hair transplant can occur due to several factors. During a hair transplant procedure, via the FUT or FUE method, donor hair from the back of the scalp is carefully transferred to the lacking area. The individual hairs are placed into the recipient area via tiny openings in the scalp. Although each opening is very small, it can be traumatic to the scalp and surrounding hair follicles. As a result, the hair grafts and existing hairs will temporarily shed. However, not every hair in the area will shed. Generally, those hairs that were already in the resting phase are likely to shed. The patient can expect some thinning of the area but not an extreme loss of hair. In most cases, the hair will begin to re-grow after 10-14 weeks. The new hair will be strong and permanent. However, it is important to understand that thinning hair, and even hair loss of the natural hair, continues even after a hair transplant. In order to prevent, or even slow down hair loss of the existing hair, the doctor may recommend a hair loss medication such as Minoxidil. This treatment should be used daily or the new and existing hair may fall out.privatepripp