Learn the Average Numbers in Michigan
One of the first questions someone seeking hair restoration will ask is how many hair grafts will be needed for a successful procedure. The answer depends on many factors and will be unique for each patient seeking hair implants. A few key issues are involved in choosing the number of necessary hair grafts at Michigan’s Ann Arbor Plastic Surgery.
What Are Your Goals?
Someone who is completely bald and seeking to completely replace a head of hair will need more hair grafts than someone who wants to fill in a bald spot on his or her crown. People start with about 20,000 hair follicular units. Once patients lose 50 percent of their hair, they will start to notice significant loss. However, with 4,000 to 6,000 hair grafts, an elegant hairline can be designed for someone who is bald. Five hundred hair grafts will cover an area about as big as a silver dollar. An area the size of a CD or DVD will require approximately 2,000 hair grafts. For denser or wider coverage, you’ll need more. Common goals in hair replacement include:
- Creating a clean frontal hairline to frame the face.
- Adding density to areas that are thinning or bald.
- Increasing density in an area where a hair transplant has already been performed.
It takes one year to see the full results of a hair transplant. Over time, you’ll see the hair from the transplant get thicker and longer. After 10 to 12 months, you and your doctor can decide whether you want a second transplant to add more hair, which will require additional hair grafts.
What’s the Condition of the Donor Site?
Hair for a graft is usually taken from the back and sides of your head. The number of hair grafts that can be harvested will depend on the density of the hair follicles in that area. During a transplant, you don’t want to leave the donor area looking thin or patchy. The thickness of your donor hair will determine how full-looking your hair restoration procedure results will be. Curly or wavy hair will also make hair implants look thicker than thinner hair. If you are light skinned with dark hair, you will need a higher graft count to help hide the color of the scalp.
How Are the Hair Grafts Maximized?
The angle of implantation of each graft is very important. If the angle of the implanted hair is maximized, you can create a roof shingle effect that covers the scalp with the least amount of hairs. This is why certain 2,000 hair graft surgeries from one surgeon look so much fuller and natural than surgeries performed by other surgeons. Hairline design and graft angle are two very important factors of a great result.
What is Your Budget?
It’s important to keep hair restoration cost in mind when you are looking at what can and cannot be done. Typically, patients have about 6,000 lifetime hair grafts that can be harvested from their scalp. A typical hair restoration case is 2,000 hair grafts. A patient potentially could have three hair transplant procedures over a lifetime. However, our goal is to maximize your first procedure so that you don’t have to have another one, though you may elect to have another procedure in the future to thicken your hair at a later date.
In the end, the best way to find out how many hair grafts you’ll need and the potential cost of a hair restoration surgery is to meet with your plastic surgeon to discuss your goals and have a physical examination of your donor hair density and hair type.