Hair Transplant - How Many Grafts Do I Need?

Hair Transplant – How Many Grafts Do I Need?

The graft numbers are determined by assessing the area to be covered, any native hair still apparent and the quality of this hair along with the natural hair characteristics of the individual. When one looks at other hair transplant results do not simply assume you will need the same as another as there are many variants to take into consideration.

The position of the hairline will either increase or reduce the surface area of hair loss that needs to be treated. There can be a tendency to desire a low, flat hairline. Great care should be taken when designing the hairline, it is an area that is not easily changed in the future and a wrong decision could be something you live with for the rest of your life.

Hair characteristics can range from hair colour, calibre or diameter of the hair, fine or thick, if the hair is curly or straight to the contrast of the hair against the skin complexion. All these aspects carry an important role for the doctor when planning your hair transplant procedure.

The medical and artistic skill of making the slits or placement recipient sites will help in allowing each hair to maximise the coverage it can give whilst ensure a natural looking hair density is maintained.

The hairline is the first area to be placed; a “jagged” or irregular edge approximately three rows and just 2-3mm in depth are made with a thin surgical instrument able to make a small angled incision for the graft to be placed in.

The hairline has the highest density of placement per cm2 of FU due to the single hairs and the need to give definition to the hairline without it being too see-through. Behind the single hairs the larger groupings are placed; in smaller procedures maybe only 1, 2 and sometimes 3 hair units are required whereas larger hair loss stages all hair groupings will be needed in the restoration. Two-hair units are placed directly behind the single hairs, followed by the three and four-hair follicles while ensuring correct angulation, direction and orientation are maintained.

Minor hairline reconstruction can be anything from 500 to 1500 follicular units with more advanced thinning over the frontal area requiring 2500-3000 follicular units. Progressive hair loss in the region of a Norwood V hair loss stage can require 5000 plus grafts and if the crown has dropped further it may require in excess of 7000 grafts.

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