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What Are the Risks of Hair Transplant? What If I Don't Have Enough Donor Hair in the Back?

1. I have long hair (Asian, 28, Male), that is thinning and shortening (progressive MPB). If I get a transplant in the future, will the transplanted follicles grow long, or will they be short? 2. Can I request a juvenile hairline? Or are there risks? 3. If my back donor area isn't enough, can my sides be used an an additional source? (Say a combination: Strip from back + FUE from sides)?

Doctor Answers 3

Hair Transplants and Donor Hair

Given your relatively young age, it is highly advised that you undergo a
relatively conservative restoration, that will assure you will maintain
a natural appearance even if you (likely) lose more hair.  And yes, hair
is routinely harvested from the sides as well.  One thing-  given that
you are Asian, you are at a higher risk of having an exposed donor site
incision due to what we commonly see as hair in the back of the head
that tends to grow more outwards than downwards.  It is very important
that this fact be considered and planned for as well.

Miami Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

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FUE Hair Transplant For Asian Hair Loss

Many of your questions depend on the hair transplant technique you choose. I would recommend FUE hair transplant, especially if your posterior scalp does not have ample donor hair for a strip harvesting procedure. FUE is able to harvest donor hair from the back and sides of the head, nape of the neck, and almost anywhere on the body (or a combination thereof) if the scalp donor supply is insufficient. This is significant in Asian patients like yourself because your hair is usually thicker than that of all other racial groups. Transplanted hairlines in Asian patients tend to be harsher when done traditionally. Using the uGraft FUE method, I have found that nape hair can be used in creating softer hairlines in Asian patients (see the attached video).  The growth length of transplanted hair will depend on the donor source. Non-head donor sources do not typically grow to the lengths of natural head hair, but they do grow longer than in their natural placement on the body (i.e. beard hair implanted to the head will grow much longer than it would on the face). An aggressive hairline is certainly not out of the question, depending on your donor sources, and again, technique of choosing.

Sanusi Umar, MD
Redondo Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Donor hair from the side of head

If hair is thick enough on the sides it can be used as donor hair.  I do not do juvenile hair lines because when you are fifty you will regret having the tranplant. 

Jack Fisher, MD
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 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.