Recovery from Hair Transplant Surgery

by

It’s important to understand what to expect with recovery from hair transplant surgery beforehand so you can prepare for how much time to take off and what you need to do to ensure a successful outcome.

MEDICATIONS

Patients are given prescriptions ahead of time at a pre-operative appointment with Dr. Thompson so they can have their medications filled before the day of surgery. Patients are instructed to bring their Valium and Norco prescriptions to the office and start the Valium thirty minutes before their procedures start time. An antiobiotic is also given to prevent infection with the first dose being taken one hour prior to surgery. It’s typically a 5 day course that needs to be taken three times per day. A medrol dose pack is prescribed to help with swelling. Three pills are taken immediately following surgery and 3 more at bedtime. The remaining pill need to be taken as instructed on the back of the package.

Most patients tolerate the medications okay and it helps to take them with food to avoid nausea. Pain medication is typically needed for 2-3 days following surgery.

INSTRUCTIONS

Patients are instructed to leave the wrap placed around their head after hair transplant surgery on for 24 hours. They can then remove the bandages. Whether there is an incision from the strip method or tiny punches from FUE with NeoGraft on the back of the scalp, it needs to be cleaned with half hydrogen and half peroxide followed by an application of Neosporin or Polysporin. This is important to do for one week.

Small pinpoint scabs will form on the top of the head where the grafts were placed. A small cup of room temperature water with a small amount of baby shampoo in it needs to be poured over the top of the head once per day starting 24 hours after surgery. The scabs will start to come off over 7-10 days as you pour water over them each day. What’s remaining after 10 days needs can be gently massaged off when washing.

Hats can be worn after 2 days but it must be a loose cap that will not rub on the grafts. Beanies are not allowed as they may snag those grafts and rip them out. It’s important to avoid excess sun exposure as well and sunscreen can be used at the two-week mark after surgery.

SWELLING

Swelling around the recipient sites typically peaks around 48 hours and get better each day following. Ice is recommended on the forehead to help as well as sleeping elevated for at least the first few nights after surgery.

WHAT TO EXPECT

The hair typically falls out with the scabs but the follicles are still in place. Plan on seeing growth from those follicles around 3-5 months with full results to be expected between 9 and 12 months. The results are very natural and will look just as the surrounding hairs do as far as direction they are placed, pattern, and thickness.

Article by
Salt Lake City Facial Plastic Surgeon