Martinick Hair News

Shedding and Shock Loss-Should I Be Concerned?

- Friday.September 20. 2019

Shedding of the transplanted hair is almost certain in the days and weeks immediately after a hair transplant procedure.  So, although it might cause you some anxiety initially, as long as you are following your post-operative care advice, there is no need to worry and the hair will grow back.

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What is shedding?

Shedding, whereby the transplanted hair falls out for over 90 per cent of the grafts after two weeks, is needed for the follicle to regenerate and create new hair.

When the hairs are shed, there may be a crust at the top of the hair and a bulb at the bottom. Scabs fall off with hairs in them but this does not mean that the follicle is removed; follicles will remain underneath the scalp.

The scabs will begin to fall off in 5 to 7 days from the donor area and 7 to 10 days from the recipient area. This process can be accelerated by using Vitamin E oil or water-based moisturising cream, such as Aqueous cream, on the scabs overnight, starting on Day 3.

Great care should be taken post-surgery to minimise pain and eliminate the chances of infection.

Listen to a post-op care reminder from Dr Martinick:

 

Again, daily cleaning is necessary to get rid of the scabs. Do not deliberately remove any hairs or crusts, but continue your recommended scalp care.

The grafts take and survive during the first 5 days after hair transplant, but the patient should still be very careful about scratching the scalp or washing the recipient area.

The healthy hair follicles are firmly in place within 10 days after the procedure and they cannot be dislodged.

Please be assured that unless you see bleeding, the shedding does not represent a lost graft. If the whole of the follicle comes out (rarely if ever), it only means that the graft wasn’t adequately placed in the skin pocket.

Improperly placed follicles during implantation get desiccated and then fall leading to loss of precious grafts.

As explained in the information pack handed to all Martinick Hair Restoration patients, shedding is a normal part of the transplant process and it is not a cause for concern.

Also, don’t panic if you notice that your hairs initially appear finer and lighter in colour at the onset. In about over a year, your hair will start to take on a much thicker and mature tone as it starts to fully grow.

Patients are also advised that shedding should not be confused with the less common condition, shock loss.

What is shock loss?

Shock loss of hair after a transplant – the sudden loss of hair from the recipient or donor area – can occur within 4 to 8 weeks after surgery.

In some cases, shock loss can occur even sooner.

We understand that shock loss, which occurs in a minority of patients, can be distressing for those affected by it and extreme care is taken to minimise the risk of experiencing shock loss.

However, if you happen to be amongst those affected by shock loss, be assured that this is only a temporary condition. This is a normal part of the healing process and your hair will grow back again.

Generally, shock loss is simply a natural response among a minority of the population to hair transplant surgery.

More common among women, shock loss is estimated to affect 5 per cent of female hair transplant patients.

Shock loss can be particularly noticeable if the transplanted hair has been placed amongst large areas of existing hair.

Is shock loss associated with any particular surgical technique?

Our professionals at Martinick Hair Restoration are often asked if there is less incidence of shock loss with Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) rather than Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT).

There is no proven link between shock loss and any type of surgery.

Shock loss can occasionally occur around the stitches, but this too is temporary and the use of Hair-A-Gain (Minoxidil) will assist regrowth.

The application of Hair A-Gain (Minoxidil) after day three following a procedure will decrease the likelihood of shock loss as well as encourage faster regrowth of any shed hairs.

Be mindful though that bad techniques and inappropriate handling will maximise shock loss.

Hence, hair transplant surgery must be performed by a skilled and experienced physician.

If you would like more information on post-operative shedding or wish to speak to one of our hair loss professionals please call 1800 689 939.

 

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To find out the cause of your hair loss and a treatment plan that is right for you, please call us for a confidential consultation on 1800 689 939.

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