Are Steroid Injections A Good Option To Address Swelling After Hair Transplant?

Can you safely reduce massive swelling in transplanted areas with steroid shots without hurting the hairs?

Doctor Answers 7

Are Steroid Injections A Good Option To Address Swelling After Hair Transplant?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Swelling at the front side of the hair is usually common after a hair transplant and steroids may be a good option when it comes to addressing swelling after a hair transplant. Steroids may reduce or stop the swelling after a hair transplant. Steroid comes in 2 forms, it is either administered orally or injected via the arms of the patient after surgery. Steroid also has other side effects and not all the surgeons use them routinely.

Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Steroids to prevent swelling

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Yes, the use of steroids can slow down or eliminate the amount of swelling after a frontal hair transplant

William Rassman, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Some doctors use steroids some don't

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
Some doctors use steroids some don't for post-operative swelling.
It is not usually given AT the site of the transplanted area. It is either given orally or by an injection to the arm.

Jae Pak, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 106 reviews

Steroid injections may cause complications

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I would not recommend steroid injections since there could be complications at the site of the injection, such as tissue loss. Sometimes steroids are given orally before and after the transplant to reduce the chance of the swelling occurring and in severe cases, oral steroids may help to reduce the swelling. In any case, you should consult your physician for evaluation and management.

Sanusi Umar, MD
Redondo Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Steroid injections during hair transplantation surgery

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

This is a personal preference among surgeons. We have had success injecting a very low dose of Kenalog along with the tumuescent solution just prior to creating the graft recipient sites.  Some of my colleagues instead give a medrol dose pack postoperatively. This also works well.  Ask your surgeon what he/she prefers. 

Allan J. Parungao, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Steroid injections for forehead swelling after hair transplants?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Forehead swelling is very common for the first several days to 1 week after hair transplants.  A Medrol dose pack could be taken (oral steroids) to help decrease the swelling.  You should contact the surgeon that did your hair transplants for specific recommendations and treatment options.

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Forehead swelling after hair transplants

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Forehead swelling coming on 2-4 days after a hair transplant is somewhat frequent if corticosteroids are not given at the time of surgery or during the post operative period. If this preventative measure was not done or didn't work, a short course of steroids can be considered. Whatever the case, the swelling almost always subsides by 7 days. I prefer to inject a long acting cortisone type drug (triamcinolone) mixed in the local anesthetic we use to numb up the scalp. With this regimen, we see only a 2% incidence of post hair transplant swelling in spite of doing up to 3500 grafts in one session.

Sheldon S. Kabaker, MD FACS
San Francisco Facial Plastic Surgeon

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.