Treating male pattern baldness

Male pattern baldness, also known as androgenic alopecia, usually affects men in their early twenties. The progression of the condition along with the degree of hair loss varies from one person to another. Hair loss is a phenomenon that the human race collectively fears. There is no clear-cut way for a person to determine whether they will be affected by hair loss or not. Looking at your parents and relatives from both sides may give you a hint, but that is not a reliable method of determining the fate of your scalp. The situation, in the end, is a game of genes.

There is no shame in hair loss

Before delving deeper into the topic, we’d like to address the stigma regarding hair loss. There is no shame in baldness, and it certainly should not be the source of your self-doubt and decreased self-confidence. Most people associate hair loss with aging and disease, that is in essence where the stigma is born. However, if the condition is severely impacting your day to day life, then you should seek treatment. Whether you decide to be content with your baldness or choose to reverse it, the decision is yours. Your happiness is what matters most. There is no shame in either choice.

Hair loss treatments

Hair loss treatments vary depending on the area of hair loss the patients and how advanced the hair loss is.

1- Hair transplants

Hair transplants are the only permanent solution to androgenic alopecia. The technique depends entirely on the distinct pattern of the condition. The notorious pattern of hair loss in androgenic alopecia is the result of the differing sensitivities to androgens between the follicular units. Follicular units in the crown and the scalp tend to be androgen-sensitive whereas the follicular units in the back tend to be resistant to androgens. Hair transplants operate entirely on the fact the different characteristics are genetically determined and cannot be altered later on in life. Follicular units from the back of the scalp are extracted and relocated to areas of hair loss. With their androgen resistant properties unaffected; the grafts permanently initiate hair growth in the area.

As is the case with everything that is too true to be real, hair transplants do not treat every case of androgenic alopecia. Two conditions have to be available for the patient to be an eligible candidate: stable hair loss pattern and sufficient supply of donor regions. Differentiating androgen resistant follicular units from androgen sensitive is not possible. The best way to find out is to wait until hair loss stabilizes on a fixed pattern. Once, the pattern has maintained, areas of hair growth are then evaluated to determine whether enough grafts could be extracted to cover the area of hair loss without jeopardizing the donor regions to confirm the patient’s eligibility. Assessing your own scalp requires professional help. If you would like to have, your scalp evaluated, book a free online consultation with a medical specialist from Vera Clinic.

The side effects of hair transplants vary according to the method used.

Hair transplant techniques

Hair transplant techniques include follicular unit extraction (FUE) and follicular unit extraction (FUT). FUT is the first method of hair transplantation invented and the one with the most side-effects. The two techniques vary in the manner of extraction where FUT follows a more invasive extraction process compared to FUE. To obtain grafts with FUT, a strip from the scalp has to be excised and later dissected. The size of the wound requires stitching which leaves a linear scar and nerve damage around the area.

With FUE grafts are extracted individually with the use of a micro-sized punch which first isolates the grafts to prepare it for extraction with forceps. The method of graft harvesting in FUE does not cause nerve damage or visible scarring.

2- Minoxidil

Minoxidil is a solution that comes in serum or shampoo form and reverses hair loss in non-advanced cases. The mechanism of how the solution terminates hair loss is not fully understood. The patient has to apply the solution daily; otherwise, the medication may not work as effectively. Some of the side effects include increased body hair growth and irritation in the scalp.

3- Finasteride

Follicular units are sensitive to a hormone known as DHT which is a stronger version of testosterone. The 5-alpha-reductase enzyme catalysis the conversion of testosterone to DHT. Finasteride is a pill that has to be taken daily to inhibit the enzymatic activity of 5-alpha reductase. Finasteride is used for non-advanced hair loss as once the follicular units go into dormancy; the process can only be reversed with hair transplants.

Some of the side effects include swelling in the hands and feet, dizziness, weakness, and breast tenderness.

6 Important Things to Consider When Selecting the Right Hair Transplant Surgeon

When undergoing a hair transplant surgery, it is important to know that you are in safe hands. Going through any surgical procedure can be a challenging task. However, the reduced cost and permanent results make it worthwhile. Nevertheless, you will only get excellent results if you choose the right surgeon. Here are a few factors to help you make the right choice.

Credentials

Even though hair transplanting can be carried out by any practicing surgeon, it is best to go to a doctor who has the right training and experience on doing hair transplants. He/she should have years of experience transplanting hair. You should never feel shy to ask the surgeon about his/her experience or level of learning. You will be paying your hard earned cash and you should never settle for less.

Experience

Experience is an important factor when choosing a doctor to carry out hair restoration services. You need to determine the number of years that he/she has been performing hair restoration surgeries. The more the number of practicing years, the better expertise you will get. A doctor who has been performing hair transplant surgeries for over ten years will not have the same experience and expertise as a surgeon who has been practicing for one year.

 Before and after images

It is always worth the time to look at the before and after pictures of surgeries that the doctor has carried out in the past. This is one of the most direct and simplest ways of assessing the effectiveness and success rate of a doctor. Pictures can help you determine the capability of the hair restoration surgeon, especially if he/she has had a high success rate with the patients that he/she has handled in the past.

Technique used

There are different types of hair transplants services that use various techniques. It is important that you research on the different techniques to determine which one you will prefer. Most surgeons will offer follicular unit extraction or FUE, where your healthy hair follicles will be transferred to balding areas. Most surgeons prefer FUE technique because it is scar-free and painless.

Online reviews

It is important for you to read online reviews and experiences of other patients with similar conditions. Most people tend to be honest about their personal experiences with the doctor. Therefore, you will get a feel of how the patients are treated, whether the process was smooth, and if the clients were content with the results. Learning from the experiences of previous patients will help you make an informed choice.

Price

When seeking hair restoration services, you need to consider whether the price is reasonable or not. If the price of the entire process seems too good to be true, then it probably is. With hair transplant, the major costs are the time of the surgeon and the use of the hospital or clinic. With hair transplant surgery, you do not pay for quality. Make sure that you determine the average price brackets and ensure that the practice your settle for fits this and your budget.

A reputable surgeon will provide aftercare services for his/her clients. Comprehensive aftercare means continuous follow-ups after surgery until a patient is 100%content with the results. The doctor should review your condition and pictures and offer recovery advice and tips. With the right aftercare services, you will be confident that you are getting the right services.