A hair transplant procedure, whether performed with a linear strip method, or with an FUE procedure, as the ARTAS System performs, places a physiologic shock on the hairs being transplanted. Think about what the follicles go through: they are removed from the scalp, and their blood supply, then placed into a tissue bath that is cool, around 4 degrees C. Then the follicles are replaced back into the scalp. There are several different types of micro-injuries that the follicles endure, one is due to the cooling of the grafts to slow their metabolism while they are outside of the body, and another one occurs when the follicles are replaced back into the scalp, and it's called a "perfusion-reperfusion injury." This causes many of the transplanted follicles to come out of their growth phase (anagen) and enter the shedding phase (telogen). The resting phase of hair follicles on the scalp is roughly 3-8 months long. The hairs that shed out after being transplanted will return slowly, and asynchronously from month 3 to about month 8. Some even experience growth for fully 12 months.
I tell my patients to pretend that every day from the day of surgery to one year from that day is like a long movie, with each day being a single frame in this movie. We won't know exactly how the movie ends until the movie ends. Further, it's different each and every single day as the follicles slowly re-enter the growth phase from month 3 to about month 8. So, in the next 3-5 months you should expect significant growth.
It generally takes about 12 months for full results. 3 months is just the start of results. Be patient and you should see your grafts start to grow in the upcoming months.
Pimples (you call it Acne) is the result of retained hair shafts in the recipient sites after a hair transplant. These fragments of the hair shafts are usually expelled and shed, so that they do not produce any problems; however, when you notice pustules, this means that your body's immune system are attacking the hair shafts left over from the recipient grafts and mobilize white well which form these pustules. These usually can be treated with warm wet soaks which make them soft and then drain. You can even poke them with a clean sewing needs of the pustules have come to a head. The concerns should be that too many of them appear and keep appearing, or that you develop red areas (lime measles) that spread over the scalp. Either more and more pustules that do not respond to warm wet soaks, or particular these red areas around the graft recipient site, might require antibiotics if it turns out to become a real infection. If the warm wet soaks solve the problem, don't worry, otherwise, visit your surgeon.
The normal progression of transplanted hair follicles is to go into a "dormant" phase, which may include hair shaft shedding or not. Usually, a percentage of the transplanted hairs will first shed, while others will not. This is completely normal but it can generate anxiety, mainly because you may see "gaps" where you know hairs were transplanted.
You were lucky that you did not experienced shedding of the hairs after the procedure. But it is still normal for them to stop growing for a while, in order to restart after some time. This is due to the need for each hair follicle to establish effective connections to blood and nerve supply in their new location, and this takes time.
You should see a nice progression of growth, density and fullness during the next 4-6 weeks.
We usually see about 10% growth at 3 months, 60% at 6 months and 90-100% at 10-12 months. So the 6 month mark should be the first check point. Sometimes we see 0-10% at 6 months and 60-70% at 8-9 months, so not seeing much growth at 6 months doesn't necessarily mean a bad result. However not seeing much growth at 8-9 months is most probably a failure, although we should wait 12 months to make sure.
At 3 months post-transplant, regardless of the harvesting technique used, patients will not be seeing the results. It takes 6 months to begin to see the results, and a full 12 months to really assess the results of the transplant. Over this period of time, the hairs mature by growing longer and more robust.
All the best,
The results of a hair transplant will normally take about 9-12 months to show. At the 3 month mark it is still early and you have had some shedding.
You seem to be doing well ander on schedule. I would get on the breakout on the recipient area, nectar it can cause scarring and damage to the grafts.
Sounds like you are doing pretty well. However, it is pretty difficult to comment without seeing your before after pics. Please post them if you can . It would be helpful . In my experience in hundreds of ARTAS patients it takes at least 6 months to see real results
It can take 6 to 12 months after surgery to see results.
Most patients think that when the transplanted hairs don't fall out it is going to keep growing as they actually see about 1/8 to 1/4 inch growth in the first week or two. This is sometimes not growth but just terminal (dead) hairs being pushed out. The follicle that was transplanted need to generate new hairs behind it. This takes several months (more than 3).