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Hair Transplant Scar Repair: Am I Eligible?

There are several reasons why you might have a scar on your scalp. Perhaps you have had an injury, been involved in an accident, or have a scar from a hair transplant. When scars are present in hair growth areas, they can be noticeable. This is when a hair transplant scar repair procedure can be necessary in order to hide scars on the scalp. 

In this article, we will focus on hair transplant scar repairs; discussing who is suitable for them, how they work, their risks, and aftercare.

Can I have a hair transplant on scar tissue?

It is possible to implant hair follicles into scar tissue, but it is more difficult due to a reduced level of blood supply. The follicles that have been grafted from the donor area will grow gradually, however, it should be noted that scar tissue can have a lower blood supply compared to other areas of the scalp. 

An insufficient blood supply can affect both the growth rate of the hair and the grafts’ chance of survival. The blood supply of scars on the scalp can vary significantly according to their type.

Am I suitable for hair scar repair?

Whether someone is suitable for a hair scar repair will depend on a number of factors. For example, if they have an inflammatory disease, it’s advised to wait at least two years of disease inactivity before getting this procedure. This is to ensure that diseases such as lichen planopilaris, psoriasis, and discoid lupus erythematosus are not active when the procedure is undergone. 

There are also certain types of scars which might mean you are not a suitable candidate for a hair scar repair. If the scar is too thick (hypertrophic), blood supply could be too limited for the grafted hair to grow and function adequately. At most hair transplant clinics, you will be able to discuss your suitability for hair scar repair and any cosmetic considerations at an initial consultation with a specialist.

Hair transplant on scar: How does it work?

The two main types of hair transplant on scars are:

Let’s look at each of these techniques:

  • An FUE scar repair: begins with the surgeon shaving an area on the scalp, which may be near the scar. They will then extract hair follicles in ‘small punches’, with only tiny marks being left behind. The surgeon can then make openings in the recipient area (scar tissue), into which the grafted hair follicles are inserted. The scar tissue and donor area are then bandaged.
  • FUT scar repair: the surgeon will take a strip of skin from the scalp, before closing the area up with stitches. This strip is typically several inches long. The strip is then split into smaller pieces (grafts). Openings are made in the recipient area (scar tissue), into which the grafts can be inserted.  The scar tissue and donor area are then bandaged.

A hair transplant on a scar can take between one and two hours to complete. At The Treatment Rooms London, we offer both the FUE and FUT hair scar repair.

Risks of hair scar repair

As with any surgical procedure, a hair scar repair carries a small degree of risk. Complications are rare, and can include:

  • Infection
  • Intense pain or itching
  • Pus or fluid draining from the surgical area (the donor and recipient areas)
  • A crust forming around the surgical area
  • Numbness
  • Bleeding
  • Folliculitis (the hair follicles swelling)
  • Hair loss

It is normal to feel a degree of discomfort around the surgical area for the first few days after your hair scar repair procedure.

You may be given:

  • Antibiotics to reduce infection risk
  • Pain medication, such as ibuprofen
  • Hair growth stimulants like Minoxidil or Finasteride
  • Anti-inflammatory steroids to treat swelling

Hair scar repair aftercare

You will usually be able to return home on the same day as your hair transplant scar repair procedure. Large hair scar repairs may need to be done over several appointments, scheduled a few days apart. After the surgical area has begun to heal following surgery, you will return for a follow-up appointment at which your bandages will be taken off and you may receive a triamcinolone injection to reduce swelling.

Here are some aftercare and recovery tips that can help with your hair scar repair recovery:

  • If you can, take a break from your everyday activities as the area heals in the days after surgery
  • Don’t wash the surgical area for a few days (you will be instructed on when you can do so) Don’t brush or comb your hair for three weeks
  • Avoid ointments, lotions and other formulas unless you are advised to use them
  • Don’t engage in intense physical activity for at least a week
  • Avoid wearing headwear as much as possible as the skin heals

Don’t be concerned if you experience hairs falling out in the recipient area. This is an entirely normal part of the hair cycle and it will take some time before you see consistent growth.  In terms of survival rates, 2014 research found that at around 13 months after surgery between 64% and 95% of hair transplanted in a scar repair survived.

Hair transplant scar repair at Treatment Rooms London

The Treatment Rooms London offer surgeons experienced in both the FUE and FUT hair scar repair procedure. Our experienced professionals assess your scalp at an initial consultation and create the best hair transplant scar repair plan for you. 

Assess your suitability for the procedure – book a hair scar repair consultation with The Treatment Rooms London. Benefit from a personalised treatment plan and an unmatched service. To book a consultation today, get in touch via our contact form, or call us on 020 8706 0076.

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