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Hair Transplant Side Effects

What kind of side effects are possible with hair transplant surgery? Could your real hair end up falling out?

Doctor Answers 17

Telogen Effluvium + Folliculitis

Occasionally, non-transplanted hairs in telogen (or the 'resting' phase of the hair growth cycle) will fall out after hair transplantation.  The risk of telogen effluvium is greater in large procedures.

Another side effects unique to hair transplantation besides the normal side effects with any skin surgery (swelling, redness, risk of infection, etc) is the possibility of developing a folliculitis or an 'ingrown' hair 2-3 months after the procedure.  This occurs when the new transplanted hairs grow out of the follicle. 

Washington DC Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Hair Transplant Side effect

Hair transplants are very safe procedures with few side effects. The common side effects are swelling, minor discomfort, numbness, itching, and local inflammation. However, they are not severe and are temporary. Very rarely a patient may experience shock loss, but this is temporary and the hair will grow back in 3-6 months. Bad design of your new hairline may be a risk factor, but this is easily avoidable with an experienced surgeon, supporting staff, and good communication with your surgeon.



Edward E. Dickerson, IV, MD
Fayetteville Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 83 reviews

Very minimal side effects if properly done

Although a lot of people worry about the "shock loss" of the existing hair after hair transplant this is an extremaly rare occurence if things are properly done. First of all we only do FUE procedures to avoid ugly linear scar in the back of the head. Also recent advances in the robotic surgery added ability to perform sites with the robot to avoid injury to existing hair. This is much more precise than human eye

Side effect of hair transplant

Side effect of a hair transplant surgery can be a "pluggy" look.  This is a technical complication from unskilled doctors and technicians.  You can also have bad scarring both on the donor and recipient area.

Fortunately if the results are great, the transplanted hairs do not fall out.
Unfortunately if it is a bad result, the transplanted hairs also do not fall out.

Jae Pak, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

Side effects

Strip method side effect is a linear scar across the back of the head.  With ALL methods, shock loss is possible.  Trauma from the tissues can cause follicles to fall asleep in small patches.  Usually this is temporary and the follicles will awaken in a few weeks to months.  Rarely is this permanent.  Infections are very rare.  "Poor take" of follicles  can occur, and this may be technical, genetic, or combination of both. Fortunately, this is rare too.

Tim Neavin, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Side Effects for NeoGraft

Like with any hair transplant procedure, “shock loss” is the most common side effect, but it is not permanent. This is due to the stress exhibited to the transplanted area in addition to swelling. It is also to be expected for the grafted hairs to fall out anytime between the first few weeks up till 3-4 months post procedure. The seed of the transplanted follicle will stay intact and in a matter of time the follicle to regenerate a new hair. Patience is key.

David L. Robbins, MD, FACS
West Des Moines Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Side effects of Hair Transplant

Possible side effects directly following hair transplant surgery include bleeding, swelling, and some discomfort. Real hair could temporarily fall out if the grafts are packed too close and blood supply is compromised.  

Jeffrey W. Hall, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Hair Transplant Side Effects

As far as complications they are relativley low....infection and bleeding are minimal.   There can be a visible scar at the donor site if the procedure is not done well.  95% of grafts should successfully take and grow. 

Jack Fisher, MD
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Hair transplants side effects

Hair transplantation is a very safe surgical proceedure. If done under local anesthesia as most are there is almost no anesthesia risk at all. If done by an experienced surgeon and support staff the results should be excellent with a great hair take. Loss of your own hair should not happen if the surgeon is careful. A process called Shock loss can happen on occasion, however it is temporary and needs no treatment. Bad design is not an actual complication but can certainly be avoided by using an experienced surgeon.

Hair Transplant Side Effects

Hair Transplants are very safe and we see very few side effects. 

As far as hair loss goes, there is always a chance there may be some temporary "shedding" from the back and sides of the "donor" areas of the head. In some cases there may be acceleration of "weak hair" (telogen hair) which the patient will lose in the near future.

We have incorporated Luce after our hair transplant procedures and have found that this reduces the chances of hair loss.

Jon E. Mendelsohn, MD
Cincinnati Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 71 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.