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Hair Transplants in Chattanooga, Tennessee

All About Hair Loss in Chattanooga

Dr. James E. White, M.D., F.A.C.S. is a Board Certified Surgeon at Advanced Surgical Concepts in Chattanooga, TN. In this series of Q&A, Dr. White offers insider knowledge about hair replacement treatment.

What is androgenetic alopecia?

Androgenetic alopecia, or male pattern baldness, is a hereditary form of hair loss. It is visibly characterized with the onset of a receding hairline and thinning crown. In the advanced stages, the baldness becomes more apparent throughout the entire top of the scalp, leaving only a rim or "horseshoe"pattern of hair. Androgenetic alopecia involves the miniaturization of the hair follicle, causing a shortening of the hair?s growth cycle. As the growth phase shortens, the hair becomes thinner and shorter until eventually there is no growth at all. Because hereditary hair loss is gradual, the sooner treatment is started, the better the chances of results.

Are medications like Rogaine and Propecia effective in combating hair loss?

Medications not only can help in the treatment of hair loss, especially when applied in the early stages of balding, but can also aide in the prevention of hair loss. FDA approved Propecia (finasteride) inhibits DHT, the main metabolite of the human body that is responsible for hair loss, and is particularly effective in reversing early, genetic baldness. In some cases, Rogaine (Minoxidil) can prevent early hair loss by stimulating hair growth, but is more useful when taken with Propecia.

It is important for patients to realize that medications work only to thicken hair in thinning areas. Medications cannot grow hair once it is entirely lost. This is where hair transplant surgery is more beneficial than Rogain and Propecia. Unlike medication, hair transplant surgery can replace hair once it is lost but does nothing to prevent actual hair loss. For advanced balding, medication in conjunction with hair replacement is the most effective means of treatment.

Am I an ideal candidate for hair transplant surgery?

For the ideal candidate, hair restoration can do wonders for the patient's confidence, appearance and general well-being. However, not everyone can benefit from this type of procedure. The best candidates for hair transplantation are:  

Men who have been loosing their hair from male pattern baldness for more than five years.

Men who are considered a Norwood class 3 or above.

Those with realistic expectations and a sufficiency of donor hair

Men with a stabilized pattern of balding.

Men and women with hair loss caused by trauma or burns .

Where Does the Hair Used in a Hair Transplant Come From?

The hair that is used in most types of hair transplant procedures typically comes from either the sides of the head or the base of the scalp. The "ring of hair" that most men have during the final stages of hair loss is typically where much of the donor hair comes from. A patient should expect to have his head looked at during a consultation in order to determine the density of the hair in the donor area and whether or not he would be an ideal candidate for a hair transplant procedure.

What should I expect after a hair transplant surgery?

Following hair restoration surgery, your procedure may be noticeable anywhere from five to ten days. Patients either cover the transplant area with their existing hair or simply wear a hat while in public. Although restrictions on alcohol consumption, smoking and certain exercises may be enforced after the procedure, most normal activities may be resumed the second day following the hair transplant surgery. Your new hair growth should begin to appear two to three months after your procedure. Optimal hair growth should be accomplished within one year.

How many hair restoration sessions will I need?

The number of hair restoration sessions required is dependent upon the severity of your hair loss, the amount of available donor hair and the rate of future anticipated hair loss. Most men can achieve desired results after only one to two sessions. To attain proper hair density, women usually need more sessions.

How is your hair restoration technique different from original "hair plugs"?

The "pluggy" effect typical of older hair transplant procedures was an outcome of using grafts that were too large with a technique called the Plug Method.Unlike these older forms of hair transplantation, Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) and strip excision with micrograft separation yields much more natural results because the size of the grafts are smaller.The FUE and strip excision with micrograft separation provides many benefits in contrast to older techniques. First of all, the smaller wounds, because of a smaller graft, allow for faster healing. Smaller wounds also cause less damage to skin in the recipient area allowing for optimal graft growth. Because the recipient sites are small, grafts can be placed closer together providing greater, more natural looking hair density. Even better, minimized scalp wounding, allowed by a smaller graft, enables a surgeon to safely transplant large numbers of grafts in a single hair transplant session.

How long does a hair transplant procedure take?

Approximately 4-6 hours.

Am I awake during the procedure?

Yes. A local anesthetic is used to numb the scalp. This way, you can read, listen to music, watch television or sleep.

Is a hair transplant painful?

There is minimal discomfort during the initial numbing.

Do the transplanted hairs grow?

Yes, they continue to grow as if they were still in the back of the scalp.

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Hair replacement, hair transplants and hair restoration in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

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